Wind (current)

Great Day..315 Raptors

American Kestrel

Northern Harrier

Today was a terrific day,starting off with a good flight of Sharpshinned Hawks and a few Kestrels. 2 enjoyable sightings early in the watch day,were a Sharpshinned Hawk diving and coming to the ground after something and it hid right in some flowers. Earlier Ann and I particularily enjoyed watching a Coopers Hawk chasing a Blue Jay,the Coopers making several attempts at the Jay. The Coopers flew and perched and flew and perched chasing the Jay through the trees with amazing agility. Around 11:40 Don spotted the first kettle of Turkey Vultures of the day. We had at least 3 very nice kettles of Turkey Vultures,the best was over 70. Thanks to Don's spotting of the first kettle,we kept our eyes peeled and saw others. The vultures were distant to the north of us. Mixed in were a few Sharpies and a few Redtailed Hawks. Several Sharpshinned Hawks,American Kestrels and a few Northern Harriers came nice and close. Late in the day 3 Peregrine Falcons went by. Special thanks for all their help to Walter and Don. Thanks to Ann Brokelman for the great photos today of the Northern Harrier and American Kestrel(I just couldnt chose so you get more pics then normal today). Thanks to everyone including Berle,Bruce,Sue,Carol,Lee,Anne,Gord,Peter,Tu and special guest at his first Raptor Watch Vin Sen(age 9 months)for their spotting and commraderie and in the case of Vin Sen for being so cute.

Today we saw:
200-Turkey Vultures
1-Bald Eagle(juvenile 12:43pm)
3-Northern Harriers
62-Sharpshinned Hawks
4-Coopers Hawks
1-Northern Goshawk
14-Redtailed Hawks
19-American Kestrels
7-Peregrine Falcons
In the early morning Walter and I saw thousands of migrating small birds. Among them were some Yellow-rumped Warblers,White-breasted Nuthatches,thousands of Red-winged Blackbirds with Brown Cowbirds,Kinglets and American Robins. We are keeping our eyes peeled for Eastern Bluebirds as they are due any time now. We are hopeful of a good migration on Sunday. Monday doesnt look very good if predicted rains and south winds come. Tuesday looks excellent for a big day as things stand right now. Dress super warm. Bathrooms are available at least until the end of October until 3pm...most nights until 7pm. I will post further if they are available later in the year.

108 Raptors...Adult Bald Eagle Flys Low

Today the number of birds was abit of a surprise. The winds were better then predicted. Berle,Bill,2 Bruces,Betty,Carol,Tu,Lee,Ann,Sue,Terry,Walter and I had a great time,watching many Sharp-shinned Hawks,a low Broadwinged Hawk,a surprising 8 Merlins(most very close),with the highlight being a very low close adult Bald Eagle at 11:25am(EST). Tu was able to capture some great shots today.
Bald Eagle and Sharpshinned Hawk Photos:Courtesy Tu Dong
Sharpshinned Hawk
Bald Eagle In Flight
Todays total of 108 raptors consisted of:
1-Bald Eagle
6-Northern Harriers
85-Sharpshinned Hawks
2-Coopers Hawks
1-Broadwinged Hawk
5-American Kestrels
Saturday,Sunday and Monday all look like there is a chance for a pretty good flight of birds. Friday it looks like there is alot of rain in the forecast. I will go over and stay until it looks like the rain isnt going to stop. My advice for infrequent visitors or folks coming from a distance is to wait for the weekend.

Quality Not Quantity..29 Raptors

Today the winds certainly came,if we can only get the raptors to check the weather channel! The large flight we hoped for didnt happen. On the plus side we had a good variety of species..nine and had some fantastic views of the birds. 3 Osprey all flew past very close to us. All of the Peregrine Falcons went by very close,allowing us to see the markings on it very well. A Merlin went through only a few feet above us,enabling us to see the markings on its face very clearly. Several American Kestrels did the same. The first bird of the day was an adult Coopers Hawk which both Walter and I photographed as it perched on the fence nearby,before dropping to the ground.
Courtesy Walter
My Shot of The Same
We had many folks join Walter and I today with high hopes,including,Carol,Brad,Lee,Bill,Mary,Betty,Ross and Peter.
Our total today was:
1-Turkey Vulture
1-Northern Harrier
4-Sharpshinned Hawks
1-Coopers Hawk
1-Northern Goshawk
9-American Kestrels
7-Peregrine Falcons

Oct 6 35 Raptors ..mostly upflight

Today most of the birds were seen between 8am and 10am(19 of 35). Walter,Ann,Richard,Bill,Berle,Carol,Betty and Lee saw some of the birds at least. We had a Merlin land briefly that had been harassed by crows. We had 2 Merlins go through together earlier in the day. The most exciting thing was watching a group of migrating Blue Jays dive very quickly for tree cover. The cause...a wee Sharpshinned Hawk. We are hoping for a big day tomorrow.
Todays total was:
1-Northern Harrier
26-Sharpshinned Hawks
2-Coopers Hawks
1-American Kestrel

Oct 5 Good Winds Good Birds..111 Raptos..YTD>2000

Frank,Betty,Lee and Walter during a brief lull.

Todays weather was very promising. As I left the house,winds from the northwest were promised and started quite early. Walter,myself,Carol,Berle,Ann,Lee,Bill,Mike,Betty and Mary enjoyed a terrific day. Between 930am and 10am Walter and I saw 4 Peregrine Falcons fly past. I managed a decent photo of one of them.
Close-up Peregrine Falcon(Frank)

Soon I spotted an Osprey. It circled,with one of the Peregrine Falcons joining it. That was a treat.
Osprey In Flight(Frank)

Sharpshinned Hawks were seen every hour of the count,most being barely above the treetops buzzing through the park.
Sharpshinned Hawk..Courtesy Ann Brokelman

Once again the local juvenile Redtailed Hawk put on a show. Ann got this rather unique angle.

We also had 2 nice low and close Broadwinged Hawks.Our final total today of 111 raptors brought our season total to 2088,with plenty of vultures and Redtails yet to come. Todays total consisted of
9-Turkey Vultures
3-Northern Harriers
81-Sharpshinned Hawks
3-Coopers Hawks
3-Broadwinged Hawks
2-Redtailed Hawks
3-American Kestrels
6-Peregrine Falcons
I am very non-commital about the weather and thus advising people to come out in the near future. I will say watch the weather..dress warm..hope for the best!

45 Raptors ..6 More Peregrine Falcons

Welcome..Please Join Us!
Peter and Walter.

Today started off slow,but in the end we had a very enjoyable day. We had plenty of visitors including Sue and Bruce,Berle,Carol,Ann,Bill,Peter and Walter. Welcome back to Lee.We enjoyed 2 Sharpshinned Hawks playing/attacking each other. We watched a local juvenile Redtailed Hawk come very close to us and circle not far above us. Peregrine Falcons started to come along after noon hour. They are definetly on the move. Ann sent along pictures of today. Todays final count was:
1-Northern Harrier
34-Sharpshinned Hawks
4-American Kestrels
6-Peregrine Falcons

Its going to be hit and miss this coming week. Most days show west winds with some rain(though it isnt amounting to much). If you have time pop over,but there isnt an outstanding day from the looks of things. Keep your eyes peeled for a northwest wind.