October 26th - One Lonely Harrier

Late today I received an email from Elias Takacs who visited the park this afternoon between 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM.  During his time there he saw and photographed a migrating Northern Harrier.  Also seen was one of the local Red-tails searching the park for another tasty meal.

Northern Harrier (Elias)
 
Thank you kindly for reporting your sighting today and welcome to the RMG Hawk Watch.
 
Tomorrow morning will see NW wind early and then WNW before switching to W in the afternoon.
 
Walter
 

October 25 - Look Way Way Up!

To start the day we watched in amazement as at least 20,000 song birds flew overhead in what seemed like one gigantic endless stream.  There were Red-wings, Cowbirds, Grackles, Robins, Waxwings, Bluebirds, Goldfinches and likely others all mixing together as they made their way westward.  Hawk flight today for the most part was very high up and at times lighting made identification difficult.  Best sighting of the day was our first Northern Goshawk of the season.  It came flying by low overhead with several crows in tow.

Today:
Turkey Vulture - 40
Northern Harrier - 4
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 43
Cooper's Hawk - 2
Northern Goshawk - 3
Red-shouldered Hawk - 1
Red-tailed Hawk - 89
Merlin - 1
Peregrine Falcon - 1
Total - 184

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1589
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 100
Northern Harrier - 115
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1529
Cooper's Hawk - 40
Northern Goshawk - 3
Red-shouldered Hawk - 10
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 253
Rough-legged Hawk - 8
Golden Eagle - 2
American Kestrel - 470
Merlin - 57
Peregrine Falcon - 50
Total - 4482

Sharp-shinned Hawk (Paul)

Red-tailed Hawk (Ann)
 
Our latest addition to the fall List is a Bonaparte's Gull which Mark spotted flying low over the lake.  It was mixed in to a very large group of gulls that were hovering over a raft of feeding Mergansers.  A good number of Loons were also sitting close by.  No Monarchs were observed again today but a nice surprise was a late Red Admiral butterfly.

Eastern Phoebe (Lee)

Golden-crowned Kinglet (Lee)

Cedar Waxwing (Lee)

American Robin (Lee)

A big thank you to: Mike 4, Paul, Mark, Bill, Terry, Berle, Norm, John, Betty, Mike 5, Pat & Nancy, Carol, Manny, Cori, Lee, Jean & Ron, Trudy, Ann, and Peter.  Not an easy day!

Some of the gang (Ann)
 
Tomorrow (Saturday) is going to be wet!  See you Sunday.

Walter

October 24th - Not too bad today.

It was another day of never ending cloud cover changes.  We kept hoping for an eagle up there but sadly it didn't happen.  We did however get an amazing look at a low flying Red-shouldered Hawk.  It came over the centre of the park barely clearly the trees, circled once and then carried on westward.  Today's flight was much lower down than yesterday.

Today:
Turkey Vulture - 19
Northern Harrier - 2
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 25
Cooper's Hawk - 1
Red-shouldered Hawk - 1
Red-tailed Hawk - 2
American Kestrel - 1
Total - 51

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1549
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 100
Northern Harrier - 111
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1486
Cooper's Hawk - 38
Northern Goshawk - 0
Red-shouldered Hawk - 9
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 164
Rough-legged Hawk - 8
Golden Eagle - 2
American Kestrel - 470
Merlin - 56
Peregrine Falcon - 49
Total - 4298

Here's a lovely shot I got this morning just after arriving in the park...

The Squirrel Remover
 
Today we witnessed several flocks of Long-tailed Ducks flying down from the north.  Another sighting of a Common Raven was a big surprise.  Two Loons were counted today, one flying and one on the lake.
 
Enjoying the day, the park, and the birds were: Kris, Berle, Lee, Paul, Terry, Manny, Allison, Betty, Carol, Ron and Jean, and Jean's brother Colin.
 
Tomorrow morning will see NW wind early and then WNW before switching to W in the afternoon.
 
Walter
 

October 23rd - 12 of the 15 Species!

Oh my, what a day we had!  With Osprey and Broad-winged Hawks likely finished for the year, we saw and counted 12 of the 15 species that we normally see migrating over Rosetta.  That would leave just the Northern Goshawk as not being seen today.  Rain, sleet, and hail didn't really seem to matter today as the birds were in the mood to fly.  At one point this afternoon the sky was starting to fill with TVs and before we could finish counting them we had to head for cover as the bad weather moved in.  I thank Manny for doing his best to find them all as they passed just to the north.  Our first two Golden Eagles of the season were counted today as well as Bald Eagles #99 and #100!  As many of the birds today were very high up, I'd like to thank everyone for their help in finding and ID'ing them.  Not easy when the skies continued to change all day long!

Today:
Turkey Vulture - 80
Bald Eagle - 2
Northern Harrier - 11
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 80
Cooper's Hawk - 3
Red-shouldered Hawk - 2
Red-tailed Hawk - 35
Rough-legged Hawk - 6
Golden Eagle - 2
American Kestrel - 2
Merlin - 3
Peregrine Falcon - 7
Total - 233

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1530
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 100
Northern Harrier - 109
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1461
Cooper's Hawk - 37
Northern Goshawk - 0
Red-shouldered Hawk - 8
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 162
Rough-legged Hawk - 8
Golden Eagle - 2
American Kestrel - 469
Merlin - 56
Peregrine Falcon - 49
Total - 4247

Eagle Time (EDT):
11:14 AM - BE
11:45 AM - BE
12:02 PM - GE
03:00 PM - GE

Some of the photos from today...

Red-tailed Hawk (Ann)

Sharp-shinned Hawk (Ann)
 
Red-tailed Hawk (Paul)
 
Merlin (Mike)

Golden Eagle (Mike)

Turkey Vultures (Mike)
 
Rough-legged Hawk (Walter)

Golden Eagle (Walter)

The Fox Sparrow was our new species for the fall 'List'.  Five Monarchs were counted today as well as 15 Loons flying overhead.  3000-5000 Red-breasted Mergansers were observed moving around the lake just out in front of our Watch site.

Under the cover of the big ol' Maple (Paul)

Golden-crowned Kinglet (Ann)

On-hand today were: Kris, Bill, Paul, John, Bruce, Dave, Betty, Peter, Mike 3, Ron and Jean, Arvo, Terry, Lynn, Manny, Cori, Lee, Trudy, and Ann.  My apologies if I've missed anyone.

Strong wind from the west is predicted for tomorrow (Thursday).

Walter

October 22nd - 41 Birds, 9 Species

As I arrived at the park and approached the Watch site this morning our first bird of the day flew by at eye level, it was a Northern Harrier.  The wind was a little bit better today, maybe even a slight north element at times, hard to say.  Birds came but again few and far between.  Best sighting of the day was a light morph Rough-legged Hawk that came in over the top of the trees, in to the park, and then northward and over Variety Village.  A short and sweet sighting!

Today:
Turkey Vulture - 9
Northern Harrier - 8
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 18
Cooper's Hawk - 1
Red-tailed Hawk - 1
Rough-legged Hawk - 1
American Kestrel - 3
Merlin - 1
Peregrine Falcon - 1
Total - 41

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1450
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 98
Northern Harrier - 98
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1381
Cooper's Hawk - 34
Northern Goshawk - 0
Red-shouldered Hawk - 6
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 127
Rough-legged Hawk - 2
Golden Eagle - 0
American Kestrel - 467
Merlin - 53
Peregrine Falcon - 42
Total - 4012

Photos are courtesy of Paul Reeves...

adult Sharp-shinned Hawk

Turkey Vulture
 
Two Monarch butterflies braved the cold wind and made their way along the bluffs.  Only 1 Loon was counted today.  A Black-throated Green Warbler was a nice surprise find today.  Eastern Bluebirds were observed again early this morning migrating westward overhead.  Although we never have too many Bluebirds land in the park they're now my favourite migrating passerine.  Always heard first and then seen.
 
Black-throated Green Warbler
 
And one that I took...
 
Red Fox
 
Watchers today included: Paul, Kris, Hugh, Carol, Ron, Lee, Berle, John, Terry, Peter, Manny, Betty, and Trudy.  Thank you everyone for another fun-filled day!
 
Special note:  Today I was given word that the city will be installing Frank's bench tomorrow sometime.  Unfortunately, we're not 100% sure of just what that means.  They might just be pouring the concrete foundation and then putting in the bench a few days later as we've seen in the past.  Anyway, I'll keep you informed of what's happening here on the blog.  Likely one day next week we'll all get together down at the park for the unveiling of the bench and a celebration of our time with the big guy.
 
The predicted weather forecast from wunderground.com is "Overcast with a chance of rain in the morning, then partly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 10C. Breezy. Winds from the NW at 15 to 25 km/h. Chance of rain 50%."  The Weather Network's forecast was very similar.  Let's all hope for a big day and that the rain doesn't come!
 
Walter
  

October 21st - Quite Slow

On a day that saw good strong wind blowing in from slightly the wrong direction we counted only 4 birds.

Today:
Northern Harrier - 1
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1
Merlin - 1
Peregrine Falcon - 1
Total - 4

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1441
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 98
Northern Harrier - 90
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1363
Cooper's Hawk - 33
Northern Goshawk - 0
Red-shouldered Hawk - 6
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 126
Rough-legged Hawk - 1
Golden Eagle - 0
American Kestrel - 464
Merlin - 52
Peregrine Falcon - 41
Total - 3971

As well, we only counted 1 Monarch butterfly.

Ann, Carol, Peter, Lee, Berle, John, and Arvo were ready if anything did happen to come our way.

Walter

October 20th - Three more Baldies!

Wow, great day!  Not a lot of birds but various events kept things interesting throughout.  Of course the large group of watchers that gathered today didn't hurt either.  Thankyou to Ron and Murray for coordinating a Timbit run.  The wind was blowing good from the west, cloud cover was excellent, and most birds were seen well (check photos below).  Our first eagle of the day was spotted quite far away in the gap and it wasn't until it got pretty much right over the watch site that we could ID it with certainty.  Another hawk flew right over top of us fairly high up but unfortunately has not been ID'ed as yet.  Thankyou Paul for the photo.  We also had a Sharpie fly in from the lake side and head right toward an unsuspecting Downy Woodpecker that was feeding in the Crab Apple tree in front of us.  Another nice moment came when I spotted a Peregrine Falcon flying in over the gap and because of the lighting conditions at the time I could clearly see it's face even from that distance away.

Today:
Turkey Vulture - 91
Bald Eagle - 3
Northern Harrier - 1
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 24
Red-shouldered Hawk - 1
Red-tailed Hawk - 9
American Kestrel - 1
Peregrine Falcon - 1
Total - 131

To Date:
Turkey Vulture - 1441
Osprey - 117
Bald Eagle - 98
Northern Harrier - 89
Sharp-shinned Hawk - 1362
Cooper's Hawk - 33
Northern Goshawk - 0
Red-shouldered Hawk - 6
Broad-winged Hawk - 139
Red-tailed Hawk - 126
Rough-legged Hawk - 1
Golden Eagle - 0
American Kestrel - 464
Merlin - 51
Peregrine Falcon - 40
Total - 3967

Eagle Time (EDT):
12:33 PM - BE
01:35 PM - BE
01:50 PM - BE

These shots are courtesy of Lee...

Northern Harrier

An adult Sharpie

A sub-adult Bald Eagle

A local Red-tailed Hawk

And these are courtesy of Paul...

The 'unidentified' Buteo is a light Red-tailed Hawk

A Sharpie locked on a Downy Woodpecker

A Red-tailed Hawk
(I love everything about this shot!)

This is a photo that I took...

The first eagle of the day


Only 14 Monarch butterflies were counted today and only 1 lonely Loon was seen.

At least 26 watchers on-site today.  Even Lee was able to spend the better part of the day with us.  I would like to thank you all for a wonderful day.

Walter