[Ontbirds] Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch (02 Oct 2015) 1393 Raptors

reports at hawkcount.org reports at hawkcount.org
Sat Oct 3 19:48:39 EDT 2015

Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch
Port Stanley, Ontario, Canada
Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 02, 2015

Species            Day's Count    Month Total   Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture                0              0              0
Turkey Vulture            1180           3310           3821
Osprey                       0              1            118
Bald Eagle                   3             12             70
Northern Harrier            54            142            586
Sharp-shinned Hawk         116            663           5098
Cooper's Hawk                2              7             71
Northern Goshawk             0              0              0
Red-shouldered Hawk          2              8             10
Broad-winged Hawk            7             49          12989
Red-tailed Hawk             15             44            105
Rough-legged Hawk            1              1              1
Golden Eagle                 0              0              0
American Kestrel             8            102           1707
Merlin                       4              9             64
Peregrine Falcon             1              4             48
Unknown Accipiter            0              0              0
Unknown Buteo                0              0              0
Unknown Falcon               0              0              0
Unknown Eagle                0              0              0
Unknown Raptor               0              0              0

Total:                    1393           4352          24688

Observation start time: 07:30:00 
Observation end   time: 14:00:00 
Total observation time: 6.5 hours

Official Counter:        Jim Dunn

Observers:        Carol Parafenko, Keith Sealy, Mac McAlpine, Mary Carnahan

Thanks to Bryce Bond and Geoff Parkin for their assistance on the knoll
this morning.

The temperature was 6 degrees Celsius when we started, with a windchill of
only 3 and NE wind at30 km / hr, gusting to 40.  As the day progressed, the
wind rose to 35 km / hr by afternoon with gusts to 50 km / hr.  Coud cover
to start was 100%, although the cloud began to thin as the morning changed
over into afternoon, bringing us a little sunshine by the end of the watch.
It certainly has been feeling like fall for the past 3 days!  As well, the
high winds have been stipping the leaves from the trees as well as knocking
down branches.

Raptor Observations:
Many thanks to Mac, Keith, Mary and Carol for spotting all those high, high
birds.  The raptor flight today was not as strong as yesterday's but
although the flight dwindled as the afternoon began, we still ended up with
a total of 1,393 birds. Most of this flight consisted of TVs (1,180) along
with a few Bald Eagles (3), a good movement of N. Harriers (54), Sharpies
(116), a couple each of Cooper's Hawks and Red-shoulders, some Broadwings
(7) and Redtails (15), our first Roughleg of the season (it must be getting
cold up north!) and a few falcons with Am. Kestrels (8), Merlins (4) and a
lone Peregrine.

Non-raptor Observations:
It really feels and looks like fall at Hawk Cliff and not just because the
leaves are being ripped by high winds and hawk watchers are all wrapped up
in hats, gloves and warm jackets and coats, but also because of the birds! 
Many thanks to Carol, Keith, Mac, Mary and Jim for their sightings today
which added up to 7 insect species and 43 avian species.  First, the
insects – Jim spotted a single Monarch Butterfly crossing the field way up
high with the raptors, while observers reported a couple of Sulphurs and
Cabbage Whites in addition to many Woolly Bear Caterpillars (now there’s a
sign of fall!).  Dragonflies weighed in at 3 species including several
Green Darners flying right past the knoll plus a Meadowhawk and a few Black
Saddlebags spotted by Carol in more sheltered areas than the field.  
On the avian front, 4 New Species for this season were reported including
Red-breasted Nuthatch, Purple Finch, Brown Creeper and Golden-crowned
Kinglet.  Ruby-crowned Kinglets, White-breasted Nuthatch and American
Goldfinch were also seen.  As well,  observers reported 4 species of
Woodpecker including Northern Flickers, still being seen flying Back and
forth across the field, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Downy and Red-bellied
Woodpeckers; 7 species of Warbler which were Black-throated Blue,
Yellow-rumped (many!), Palm (numerous), Blackpoll, Am. Redstart and
Nashville Warblers; Eastern Bluebird (4), Am. Robin, Swainson’s Thrush and
Hermit Thrush.  In addition, Dark-eyed Junco, Eastern Towhee, Song and
White-throated Sparrows were found in brushy, weedy spots along the cliff
and the usual Northern Cardinals and Gray Catbirds were found with a little
effort.  Most of today’s species were hunkered down in weeds and brush so
spotters had to work at finding them.

The forecast for this evening and overnight show the wind swinging from NE
to E in the early hours of the morning, with heavy cloud cover to start out
for tomorrow.  Wind velocity will continue to be fairly high with the
likelihood of rain moving in as early as Saturday noon.  The rest of
Saturday looks like a washout, but partial clearing is expected for Sunday,
with E winds prevailing.  Monday we’re back to NE winds, at 20 to 25 km /
There are no low raptor flights expected with that forecast – all will be
high up and challenging to spot and to ID.  NE winds on Monday will bring
slightly warmer temps and from the present forecast, it looks like we could
be enjoying 20 C. by Wednesday or Thursday of next week.  

Report submitted by Dave Brown (thebrowns at ezlink.on.ca)
Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch information may be found at:

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