[Ontbirds]HSR: Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch (09 Sep 2008) 393 Raptors

reports at hawkcount.org reports at hawkcount.org
Thu Sep 11 02:09:35 EDT 2008

Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch
Port Stanley, Ontario, Canada
Daily Raptor Counts: Sep 09, 2008

Species            Day's Count    Month Total   Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture                0              0              0
Turkey Vulture               0              0              0
Osprey                       8             41             42
Bald Eagle                  12             32             34
Northern Harrier             8             36             36
Sharp-shinned Hawk         112            320            322
Cooper's Hawk                2              2              2
Northern Goshawk             0              0              0
Red-shouldered Hawk          0              0              0
Broad-winged Hawk          186            209            217
Red-tailed Hawk              0              1              3
Rough-legged Hawk            0              0              0
Golden Eagle                 0              0              0
American Kestrel            59            245            261
Merlin                       5             17             17
Peregrine Falcon             0              0              0
Unknown Accipiter            0              7              7
Unknown Buteo                0              1              1
Unknown Falcon               0              0              0
Unknown Eagle                0              0              0
Unknown Raptor               0              0              0
Mississippi Kite             1              1              1

Total:                     393            912            943

Observation start time: 06:00:00 
Observation end   time: 16:30:00 
Total observation time: 10.5 hours

Official Counter:        Colin Horstead

Observers:        Brian Hawthorne, Dave Brown, Eleanor Kee-Wellman,
                  Keith Sealy, Mark Cunningham, Matt Oswald, Ronnie Goodhand,
                  Wayne Parnall

A few visitors today...Jim Dunn, Joan & Don Lough, Murray Larmer, Remy
Pokraka...Thanks to our gang of counters / spotters...Matt, Brian, Mark,
Keith, Mary, Ronnie, Wayne and Eleanor. Luckily...several of these folks
got to enjoy the young Mississippi Kite.  Too bad no one had a camera!!

Well...for a day that started in the rain....it progressed into a classic
fall hawkwatching day!  The solid layer of lower clouds cleared away by
mid-morning and by around noon we had lots of blue sky around and nice
cumulous clouds building. Temp was cooler to a high of just 20. Winds were
light NW for the morning...increasing to moderate NW and then N for the

Raptor Observations:
A nice flight today with 393 raptors tallied....though this was a bit lower
than we'd anticipated given the excellent conditions as the day progressed.
The Broadwings (186) did provide a few nice kettles...the largest with
roughly 30 birds. However, the highlight of the day (as reported in a
separate posting) was the juvenile MISSISSIPPI KITE which passed by the
hawkwatch in the afternoon. The bird came right in towards our count
location at treetop level...providing excellent looks for everyone. We also
counted numerous Bald Eagles (12) today...again tallying only those that
could be distinguished (based on plumsgr / molt) from the local pair and
their youngsters. Interestingly, we did count one adult who was "escorted"
to the west by the pair...accompanied by several vocalisations from the
intruder. One particular immature BE was exhibiting serious molt and could
only be described as messy looking!

Non-raptor Observations:
Lots of Goldfinch flights today and good numbers of swallows (primarily
Barn)...but few warblers as many of them seemed to have moved on. One
brazen young Red-bellied Woodpecker sat and vocalised at the very tip of a
nearby dead tree...an interesting choice of perch given the ongoing
presence of a young Cooper's Hawk that's been hunting the bushlots around
the hawkwatch the last few days. Monarch numbers are still low...though
dragonfly numbers continue to be impressive.
Report submitted by Dave Brown (thebrowns at ezlink.on.ca)
Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch information may be found at:

Site Description:
Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch:
Oldest Hawkwatch in Ontario - since 1931 - located just east of Port
Stanley on the cliff overlooking Lake Erie 

Directions to site:
>From east 401, take the Highbury south cut off at London, follow Highbury
(Hwy 30) south to St. Thomas. Highbury changes into South Edgeware at a
large curve in the road to the west. Follow South Edgeware west to the
first set of traffic lights - Burwell Road, turn left (south) and stay on
this road. It becomes Fairview Ave (Regional Road 22), which runs directly
into Hawk Cliff Road. You will see a sign for Hawkes Cliff Farm, where they
sell fresh vegetables and a gravel road just beyond sign. Just continue
down gravel road to viewing area.

>From west 401, take the Highway # 4 (Colonel Talbot Rd.) exit south,
through Talbotville, road now is Sunset Rd. continue towards St. Thomas;
you will come to a veer in the road, straight up to St. Thomas, veer to the
right for Port Stanley, follow Highway 4, now Sunset to Port Stanley. As
you approach Port Stanley you will come to a large curve  in the road with
a sign saying East St, to the left. Take East St., and follow it to the
first road left, (opposite Port Stanley Water Tower) Dexter Line. Follow
Dexter Line approximately 2 km. and turn right down gravel road at Hawkes
Cliff Farm, and follow gravel road to viewing area 

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