Wind (current)

End of Season Party Idea: Dec 8th

Save the date: Sunday, December 8, 11:30 a.m.
We will be having our third annual end of year brunch on the above date. Last year we had 12 people but I think we will be closer to 20 this year. Tucker’s Marketplace, last year’s venue, has since closed down but we have a new restaurant called The Arkadia House. It is a Greek restaurant with a lot of space, amazing food and reasonable prices. Here is the lunch menu:
There is quite a lot of parking available.
Lee sent this review and some photos of the meal she enjoyed. Im pretty sure the bread comes without the bite from it :-)
I’ve been there before and the food is very good. With the entrees you get rice and potatoes but they let you substitute fries and steamed veggies. When we got there they brought out toasted garlic bread, olives and pickles and we had to take a good portion of our meals home because there was so much food. I’ve attached photos of our meals, mine was a veggie kabob meal and my mom had spanakopita (spinach and cheese pie) and there are all kinds of other meals which are listed on their menu.
The restaurant is located at 2007 Eglinton Avenue East. It’s just west of Birchmount on the south side.

Think about it gang. All are welcome as always. The location is pretty central to the area so anyone who can get to the watch can probably get to the brunch. I know last year everyone had a great time as with the year before that. I look forward to this years gathering.

250 Raptors...YTD..6454...One Day Record For Redshouldered Hawks

Well the weathermen got it wrong again. Today started off with everyone taking off layers of extra clothing and few birds. Enough was coming to keep most of us interested. By noon the weather changed, winds shifted, the sky took on an October look and the temperatures took on a very fall like feel. Birds started to come, often in fast and furious flurries.
  We set a one day record for the site of 19 Red-shouldered Hawks. This brings our season total to 35 which is our highest ever and of course we are still counting. (consequently its also our highest total of Red-shouldered Hawks in a month too). We had fantastic views of both juvenile and adult Red-shouldered Hawks. Almost all were low and close.
Ann Brokelman sent along several fantastic shots of the various Red-shouldered Hawks we saw. Note the "cresents" near the ends of the wings on the underside of the hawks. Ann also captured some great shots of the red on the shoulders that give this beautiful hawk its name.

We had a good number of Redtailed Hawks, several were darker northern birds.
 We had at least 2 male Northern Harriers among the 9 Harriers we counted. One adult male made 3 passes of the park. At 12:20pm I spotted a juvenile Golden Eagle out over the lake. Keeping on it allowed some of us to clearly see the field markings making this sighting an easy call.  We also had our first Roughlegged Hawk of the season, mis-ID'd by yours truely at first, before I was happily corrected. It was a dark-morph. I did manage a poor photo which was back-up of this ID. 2 more Goshawks were added to the count, a bird we always enjoy.

Todays excellent count of 250 raptors consisted of:
67-Turkey Vultures
9-Northern Harriers
46-Sharpshinned Hawks
7-Coopers Hawks
2-Northern Goshawks
19-Redshouldered Hawks(a new 'day' record)
94-Redtailed Hawks
1-Roughlegged Hawk(dark morph)
1-Golden Eagle(juv. 12:20 PM)
2-American Kestrels
250-Total Raptors

Our current year to date total(YTD ) is now 6454, which leaves us only 173 birds from a countsite record of 6627. And only 546 from the benchmark of 7000 total raptors this fall.
Thanks to Ron, Ann, Bill, Mark, Carol, Betty, Patty, Harry, Mike 3, Terry 2, Allison, Alan(visiting from Cranberry Marsh Raptor Watch), Lee, Bruce, Cori and Peter for the spotting and ID assistance.

Other birds seen today included many Pine Siskins, many Eastern Bluebirds and of special note a Northern Shrike and 2 Red-headed Woodpeckers. One juvenile which I was able to capture a photo of.

Continue to watch the weather. The next several days may be rain outs. Dress for very cold north winds. Note that on the weekends bathrooms are only open from 9am-5pm(possibly only 3pm).  

6 Raptors...YTD...6204

Terry2  reports:
Hi Frank,

Attending the hawk watch today were:

Cori, Ron P., Peter, Terry2, Bruce Falls and his wife,   and of course
cannot forget Beryl.
Lots of passing visitors, asking questions.
Total raptors:  6
RT - 5
TV - 1
(local TV - 1)

Lots of migrating Chicadees, Pine siskins,  Golden-crowned kinglets,
downys, Blue jays, Redwinged Blackbirds and  Redbreasted Nuthatches

Thanks to Terry for todays count. Im sorry I missed Bruce et al.

Keep an eye on the weather it keeps changing day to day so who knows what it will bring! Lets hope for the best!

Weather Watch...Sunday Monday

Everyone keep an eye on Sunday and Monday. Right now the winds are predicted to be a strong North 30kmh both days with no rain now. Saturday the amount of rain has dropped so it may even disappear for Saturday. A reminder that it will also depend on if it rains to the north and or east of us, but right now Sunday and Monday are looking good. Often the 2nd days are better, as birds have a chance to move down on the first good wind. I suspect both days will be winners if no rain falls. Eagles like the windy cold weather! For Walter and I it will be like Christmas is lets get to the weekend!!

20 Raptors...YTD...6198

A short report from Walter today. Actually abit better than expected, Walter and the gang saw a number of birds to add to our growing total.
Here's what we saw today:
3-Northern Harriers
11-Sharpshinned Hawks
3-Coopers Hawks(one was missing all of it's tail feathers)
1-Northern Goshawk(flew right beside us along the bluffs)
1-Redshouldered Hawk
1-American Kestrel
20-Total Raptors

Most birds were fairly high up except for a few Sharpies and the Goshawk. Joining Walter today were Berle, Betty, Peter, Hugh, Phil, Terry, Cori, and Bonnie.

Record One Day Merlin Count..117 Raptors...YTD...6178

Today we finally got a reasonable wind and our count of 117 reflected that. In all 9 species were seen, many were close views. Todays highlight was 17 Merlin, a new one day record for Rosetta McClain Gardens. Each time another appeared it was hard to believe. At 17 they may have been undercounted as I made allowances thinking that one was a local several times. Knowing we saw 2 together a few times and 3 in a row in rapid succession, its possible that the true total was greater than 17. (as yet no photos, most flew by very quickly).

Todays birds were:
5-Turkey Vultures
10-Northern Harriers
56-Sharpshinned Hawks
2-Coopers Hawks
1-Northern Goshawk
3-Red-shouldered Hawks
17-Redtailed Hawks
6-American Kestrels
17-Merlin(new one day record)
117-Total Raptors

A few Northern Harriers, Turkey Vultures and a Red-shouldered Hawk flew past very close and low. I did manage a decent Turkey Vulture photo and an interesting Harrier shot where it was looking over and checking us out.
Mike 4 got some great shots. There is a Redtailed Hawk flying out over the lake, a fantastic shot of a Northern Harrier and in my sleepy haze I almost forgot that we witnessed a great rumble between a Coopers Hawk and an American Crow. Thanks to Mike for these shots.

Patty sent along these shots of the  Coopers vs Crow "smackdown"

 We also had a few large flocks of Eastern Bluebirds today. Id imagine we saw 200-300 in total. Pine Siskins moved back and forth through the park much of the day too.
As near as I can tell so far, from other southern Ontario sites, noone had a huge day, so there still remain many Turkey Vultures and Redtailed Hawks to move yet. Through next Saturday there doesnt look to be a decent day for a large movement of raptors, so stay tuned and watch incase there are any changes in the weather predictions.