HSR: Holiday Beach (20 Sep 2003) Raptor counts (total=274)

reports at hawkcount.org reports at hawkcount.org
Sat Sep 20 05:09:50 EDT 2003

Holiday Beach Migration Observatory
Essex County, Ontario, Canada
Daily Raptor Counts: Sep 20, 2003

Species            Day's Count    Month Total   Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Turkey Vulture               0             42             42
Osprey                       3             43             43
Bald Eagle                   0             39             39
Northern Harrier             8            127            127
Sharp-shinned Hawk         134           1775           1775
Cooper's Hawk                2             46             46
Northern Goshawk             0              0              0
Red-shouldered Hawk          1              2              2
Broad-winged Hawk           71           1225           1225
Red-tailed Hawk              2             85             85
Rough-legged Hawk            0              0              0
Golden Eagle                 0              0              0
American Kestrel            52            520            520
Merlin                       0             18             18
Peregrine Falcon             1              2              2
Unknown                      0              5              5

Total:                     274           3929           3929

Observation start time: 06:15:00 
Observation end   time: 14:00:00 
Total observation time: 7.75 hours

Official Counter: Steve Greidanus

Observers:        Bob Pettit, Chuck Sharbaugh, Tom Bartlett

Many visitors to the tower today joining us for the 2nd week of our hawk
festival, from close and far. Visitors from Michigan, Ohio & as far away
as London, England.
Tom Bartlett & Company from ohio, Tom & Alice Faren, Chuck & Esther Gossel
& many more, thanks for all the help!

Clear blue sunny skies predominated today, light winds started from the W
turning briefly WNW and then shifting to S and SW. Temps ranged from 13 to
23 degrees celcius.

Mostly Sharpies today, followed by Broad-wings, & Kestrels with some good
views of several Osprey overhead, as well as a record early immature
Red-shouldered hawk.

Blue Jays dominated the morning skies with over 9000 tallied. Also very
visible in the early morning was a good warbler migration with
Black-throated blue, Magnolia, Palm, Blackpoll, Redstart, & Black-throated
Green all seen from the tower. Cedar waxwings, American Goldfinch, Chimney
swift, Caspian tern, Black-bellied plover and Semi-palmated plover were
also sighted today.

More birds, but not too many with out the N winds.
Report submitted by steve greidanus (steve.greidanus at hbmo.org)
Holiday Beach Migration Observatory information may be found at:

Holiday Beach Migration Observatory

Information on southern Ontario\'s hawk migration and the Holiday Beach
Conservation Area site

Southwestern Ontario is largely an area of flat, featureless farmland. There
are only two geographic features of note in the region. One is the proximity
of the Great lakes, which influence bird migration in the area to a great
extent, The second is the shape of the province, roughly funnel-shaped with
the narrow end to the southwest. These features confine south-bound bird
migrants, especially hawks, to specific flight corridors.

Holiday Beach Conservation Area was formerly a Provincial Park, but is now
administered by the Essex Region Conservation Authority (ERCA). It is
strategically located at the extreme southwestern tip of southern Ontario.
The park is on the eastern end of a large freshwater estuary known as Big
Creek. (Specifically the site is 1.1 miles south of the junction Highway 20
(old 18) and Essex Road 50, Town of Amherstburg).

The Holiday Beach Migration Observatory (HBMO) (founded in 1986) is a
non-profit, volunteer organization formed to promote the study and
protection of migrating birds. Activities focus primarily on fall migration
of raptors and other species. This site is in Essex County, Ontario, on the
north shore of Lake Erie near the Detroit River. In 1988, HBMO persuaded
Detroit Edison to donate a 40 foot Hawk Tower which is now at the site.

Southwestern Ontario has a funneling effect on migrating raptors due to the
geography of the nearby lakes and the reluctance of most raptors to cross
large bodies of water. Birds gain altitude over the flat farmland to the
north and east, rising easily with the thermals that such areas provide in
abundance. As the birds head south they meet Lake Erie and, reluctant to
cross it , turn west. With appropriate wind and weather conditions, birds
pile up along the lake shore and move west until they reach the narrow
crossing at the Detroit River (or island hop within the river mouth).

reports at hawkcount.org

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