[Ontbirds] Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch (03 Oct 2015) 98 Raptors

reports at hawkcount.org reports at hawkcount.org
Sat Oct 3 19:58:19 EDT 2015

Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch
Port Stanley, Ontario, Canada
Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 03, 2015

Species            Day's Count    Month Total   Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture                0              0              0
Turkey Vulture              94           3404           3915
Osprey                       2              3            120
Bald Eagle                   1             13             71
Northern Harrier             0            142            586
Sharp-shinned Hawk           0            663           5098
Cooper's Hawk                1              8             72
Northern Goshawk             0              0              0
Red-shouldered Hawk          0              8             10
Broad-winged Hawk            0             49          12989
Red-tailed Hawk              0             44            105
Rough-legged Hawk            0              1              1
Golden Eagle                 0              0              0
American Kestrel             0            102           1707
Merlin                       0              9             64
Peregrine Falcon             0              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:                      98           4450          24786

Observation start time: 08:00:00 
Observation end   time: 10:00:00 
Total observation time: 2 hours

Official Counter:        Mary Carnahan

Observers:        Jim Dunn, Keith Sealy

Visitors today were Lucille & Bob and Wayne.

The weather was cold, windy and miserable. Although it was actually a balmy
9 degrees Celsius when we arrived the windchill was 2 C.  Wind was straight
from the east and really blowing, with cornstalks, leaves, dirt and other
debris; we heard lots of tree song (as opposed to birdsong) beside and
behind us. Rain sprinkled from time to time.  Cloud cover was almost 100%
and the sky seemed to grow darker the longer we sat.  And did I mention the
wind (cold, from the east, in our faces)?  Wind speed was 34 KM / hr to
start, gusting to 47 km / hr.  Rose to 36 in the second hour.  

Raptor Observations:
We had 4 countable raptors including 2 Osprey, both very high, one along
the cliff, being blown out over the lake and struggling to recover, the
other at the north end of the field, but the flight pattern was the same. 
It took both birds a couple of minutes to cross the field.  Also during the
first hour we had 1 Bald Eagle and 1 Cooper's Hawk (large -- probably
female) above the treetops, but not by much, at the north end of the field.

In total we had 98 birds, consisting overwhelmingly of Turkey Vultures
(94), which were spread unevenly over the 2-hour watch, with most in the
first hour.  Our total for the day was 98 birds belonging to 4 species

Non-raptor Observations:
A key to today's possibilities for a decent count was the fact that NO
BLUEJAYS were flying.  The odd one flew individually, for a total of 7,
across the field.  A single Northern Flicker dashed from the west treeline
to the east treeline, and a Pileated Woodpecker made a break for it, headed
west to the woods.  The other hint was that NO GULLS were flying. 
Eventually, observers managed to find 1 Herring Gull hugging the cliff,
headed east.  Instead of the many flocks of Canada Geese flying every which
way that we have seen over the past 3 days, one observer reported 6 Geese
flying low along the northern treeline.  And the total number of Eastern
Bluebirds seen on the wires on Fairview Rd was zero (0).

Nonetheless, observers managed to find a few songbirds in the bushes near
the parking area, including Song and White-throated Sparrows, an Eastern
Phoebe, plus Palm and Yellow-rumped Warblers.  Back on the knoll, one
Common Loon was seen flying south towards the lake at low altitude over the

Easterly winds and rain will persist throughout Saturday night and although
the wind will continue from the East on Sunday, wind velocity is supposed
to drop to 20 - 25 km / hr.  Sunday will be cool, somewhat windy, and
cloudy all day.  Wind velocity is expected to drop considerably by Monday,
with some sun and cloud, but still easterly, continuing to diminish as the
day goes on, then switching to S, but then northerly winds on Tuesday.  
Report submitted by Dave Brown (thebrowns at ezlink.on.ca)
Hawk Cliff Hawkwatch information may be found at:

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