RMERF counts, October 26

Thursday, October 26 [Day 34] (Caroline Lambert, assisted by Rick Robb) 0830-1835. The temperature was -4C at 0830, rose to a high of 8C at 1700 and was 5C at the end of observation. Ground winds were calm or light and variable in the morning and SW 5-10 km/h to 1700 and finally NW 5-10 gusting 15 km/h. Ridge winds were SW moderate to strong to 1200 when they became light to 1700 after which they were strong NW for the rest of the day. Initial cloud cover was 10% cirrostratus and altostratus that increased to 100% between 1000 and 1500 and decreased to 0% after 1700. Despite the perfect observing conditions the day again produced a disappointing 16 bird raptor migration of 3 species that moved between 0955 and 1710. The count was 4 Bald Eagles (3a, 1j), 1u Northern Goshawk, 1 unidentified dark Buteo and 10 Golden Eagles (5a, 1sa, 2j, 2u). Ten migrants were counted between 1100 and 1200 that raised expectations that a movement was finally underway, but only 4 more migrants were counted during the entire afternoon. Other birds seen included a flock of 40 Canada Geese flying south, 1 juvenile (probable) California Gull, 4 Golden-crowned Kinglets, a flock of 40 Grey-crowned Rosy-Finches, 2 Pine Grosbeaks, 45 Common Redpolls, and 4 Pine Siskins. A Striped Skunk ambled south, east of the river, and the 7 visitors to the site were all west of the river.

10.08 hours (373.8) BAEA 4 (88), NOGO 1 (23), UB 1 (10), GOEA 10 (2721) TOTAL 16 (3030)

 

Vicki Ridge [Day 35] (Peter Sherrington, assisted by Raymond Toal) 0900-1820 (Observation from the Waterton 61 wellsite on the western flank of the ridge). Yesterday’s late rain turned to snow overnight and there was 4cm at the site at 0900 which showed fresh tracks of 2 Grizzly Bears that had walked south during the night. The temperature was -5C which slowly rose to a high of 5C at 1700 and 1800 and was 4C at the end of observation. It was calm or very light E winds until 1030 when a light W flow was detected which increased to 15-20 gusting 30 km/h from 1100 to 1500 and then 25-30 gusting 40 km/h for the rest of the day. It was cloudless to 1020 when altostratus cloud began to move from the NNE that quickly reached 100% by 1045. Around 1300 it disappeared as rapidly to 10% then increased again to 80-100% altostratus and lenticular which again dwindled to 10% for the last two hours of observation. A total of 82 raptors of 8 species migrated between 1035 and 1815 made up of 4 Bald Eagles (1a, 2j, 1u), 1 adult female Northern Harrier, 6 Sharp-shinned Hawks (2a, 4u), 2 adult Cooper’s Hawks, 2 Northern Goshawks (1a, 1u), 3 adult calurus Red-tailed Hawks (1 light, 2 dark), 41 Rough-legged Hawks (38 light, 2 dark, 1u), 1 unidentified dark Buteo, 21 Golden Eagles (15a, 2sa, 4j) and 1 Prairie Falcon. These totals include 13 migrants (2 Sharp-shinned Hawks, 8 Rough-legged Hawks and 3 Golden Eagles) seen by Raymond between 1415 and 1630 from the western edge of Kyllo Ridge near the Waterton 68 wellsite. Because of the initial calm conditions only 1 bird was recorded before 1100, but subsequent movement was steady and peaked at 20 birds between 1500 and 1600. A skein of 22 Canada Geese flew west at 0935, 2 Trumpeter Swans flew SE at 1016, and other migrant birds were 25 Grey-crowned Rosy-Finches, 5 Red Crossbills and 4 Common Redpolls.

9.33 hours (289.7) BAEA 4 (101), NOHA 1 (16), SSHA 6 (741), COHA 2 (90), NOGO 2 (74), RTHA 3 (227) RLHA 41 (377), UB 1 (18) GOEA 21 (1439), PRFA 1 (4) TOTAL 82 (3203)

 

Steeples [Day 27] (Vance Mattson) 1330-1830. The temperature was 10C at 1330 and dropped to 4C by 1830, cloud cover was initially 100% altocumulus but it was cloudless by 1530 giving a sunny and pleasant day, and calm conditions prevailed throughout. When Vance arrived at the site 2 adult Golden Eagles were already moving south above the ridges, followed by a juvenile Bald Eagle, an adult light calurus Red-tail Hawk, and an Osprey, all before 1400.           Ten migrants moved between 1400 and 1500, but the next migrant, an adult Bald Eagle, was not seen until 1632, after which migration was sporadic with the last migrant, an adult Golden Eagle, moving south at 1754. The final count of 21 birds of 5 species was 1 Osprey, 9 Bald Eagles (5a, 1sa, 3j), 2 adult calurus Red-tailed Hawks (1 light, 1 dark) and 6 Golden Eagles (5a, 1j). The calm conditions produced much flapping and/or extended soaring flight. Non-migrants were a juvenile and adult Bald Eagle.

5 hours (126) OSPR 1 (5), BAEA 9 (179), SSHA 3 (78), RTHA 2 (48), GOEA 6 (81) TOTAL 21 (437)

 

MOUNT LORETTE SUMMARY COUNT (September 20 to November 15)

 

DAYS 34

HOURS 373.8

TURKEY VULTURE (TUVU) 0

OSPREY (OSPR) 1

BALD EAGLE (BAEA) 88

NORTHERN HARRIER (NOHA) 5

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (SSHA) 77

COOPER’S HAWK (COHA) 18

NORTHERN GOSHAWK (NOGO) 23

Accipiter sp. (UA) 3

BROAD-WINGED HAWK (BWHA) 1

SWAINSON’S HAWK (SWHA) 0

RED-TAILED HAWK (RTHA) 29

FERRUGINOUS HAWK (FEHA) 1

ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK (RLHA) 21

Buteo sp. (UB) 10

GOLDEN EAGLE (GOEA) 2721

Eagle sp. (UE) 6

AMERICAN KESTREL (AMKE) 3

MERLIN (MERL) 5

GYRFALCON (GYRF) 2

PEREGRINE FALCON (PEFA) 6

PRAIRIE FALCON (PRFA) 6

Falco sp. (UF) 2

Unidentified Raptor (UU) 2

 

TOTAL 3030