Wind (current)

Take The Pledge To Fledge!! P2F 2012

Aug 24 to 26th is the first ever Pledge To Fledge weekend. I thought the Rosetta McClain Gardens Raptor Watch gang would like to take part. It seems to me we do every day of every season anyway.

Here is the pledge :
"I pledge to actively share my enthusiasm for birds with non-birders by taking them into the field to show them birds and foster their own appreciation for birds whenever possible. I will strive to be friendly, patient, helpful, and welcoming when approached by ‘non-birders’ or asked about birds by acquaintances. I believe that individual birders, as part of an international grassroots movement, can effect positive and profound change for our shared birds and their future."

Complete information can be found here:

Think of the people we got involved over the years and what they've gone on to do and see!

First Northern Harrier

Another slow hot day, spent mostly looking for butterflies and enjoying the company of friends. Walter and I chatted with Carol and Ann today. Butterfly expert Barry also came by and Walter and I had a long interesting talk with him.
   We had  one Northern Harrier go past today and another Merlin. The local Redtail was around the park all day. Charlene had an interesting experience yesterday evening. She was cutting the lawn when a snake fell from the sky. Naturally she was surprised! Soon the young Redtail came down and grabbed the prize he had dropped. He ripped the head off and ate. She said the last 3 inches went down like a sucked piece of spaghetti. No photos of that sorry.
    Predictably things have been slow. The closer we get to the end of the month the more potential there is to see greater numbers.
  Aug 12 and 13 the Persaids meteor shower will be viewable in the early morning. I think that means 4amish. I think thats a check from my balcony viewing rather than trying to get a gang down to Rosetta at that time of day. 

One Merlin and a Local Visitor

Shortly after I arrived today, I was seated on a bench near "the rock" chatting with park staffer Ron, when I looked to my left and had a great surprise. A local juvenile Redtailed Hawk had just landed and was scouring the park for his breakfast. I snapped several photos and took a quick video, before he took flight beyond the hedges sending a Red Squirrel scrambling for its life. Walter and I did see one countable bird again, this time a Merlin. We saw a local adult Redtailed Hawk and an American Kestrel which was going east rather than migrating. The rest of the day, Walter and I spent chasing butterflies(well searching for them at least). We saw Question Marks, Red Admirals, a lone Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, a lone Giant Swallowtail, Silver-spotted Skipper, many Monarch Butterflies, a few Fiery Skippers and one skipper I await Walter to tell me the name of again. Thanks to Walter for a slow but interesting morning. Rarely a dull moment at Rosetta McClain Gardens.

Very Early Broadwinged Hawk

After a nice cool night, Walter and I wanted to get down to the park to at least enjoy the nice weather. Allison and Berle had the same idea. We did see 4 Turkey Vultures kettle, but they are a local family unit. We also saw a local Redtailed Hawk hunting the park in the afternoon.
Redtailed Hawk(courtesy BIGFRANK) Our best bird by far was a very early Broadwinged Hawk. It gave terrific views and showed its bowed wings when it glided. We are 100% sure thats what it was., so its a counter! On arrival at about 7am there was a large movement of swallows. Many were Barn Swallows with some Northern Rough-winged as well. Today was just a teaser for whats to come! Ive just checked the weather for the coming week and Saturday looks like the most interesting day. Thursday also looks interesting,but the humidex is high. Please remember migration of raptors is just starting up,things really kick into gear in September. Dont expect hoards of birds in August.