The South Livingstone Raptor Count for the spring migration of 2009 has now begun. First official day of counting began on 15th February 2009. Follow the daily movement of raptors on this blog updated daily by Peter Sherrington.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

May 21 [Day 83] (Piitaistakis Ridge) Finally a pleasant day on the ridge! The temperature rose to 9C from a low of -0.5C, winds were WNW to W generally between 20 and 40 km/h and cloud cover was 10-70% cumulus and cirrus providing both plenty of sunshine and excellent observing conditions. And there was plenty to look at as raptors took advantage of the near ideal conditions with 45 birds of 10 species moving between 1019 and 1842 with each hour between 1000 and 1800 yielding between 4 and 8 birds. Birds whose numbers had been hitherto conspicuously lower than last year lead the charge with a season high 19 Sharp-shinned Hawks (all juveniles) and 11 Red-tailed Hawks (9 juveniles and 2 birds of unknown age). All 3 harriers were juveniles and the 5 Golden Eagles comprised 1 subadult and 4 juvenile birds. The less common raptors at the site were well represented including a juvenile light morph Broad-winged Hawk, a light morph Swainson’s Hawk of unknown age, 2 juvenile Ferruginous Hawks, and an adult tundrius Peregrine Falcon. A juvenile female Prairie Falcon at 1739 was also considered to be a migrant. Nearly all the birds passed close to the observation point allowing examination of the plumage types under perfect lighting conditions. Tomorrow was scheduled to be the last day of the count but now I shall try to keep it going for a few more days. Nothing fails like success! A Lincoln’s Sparrow seen on the climb to the site was a first spring record for the count and only the second record overall. 12.5 hours (945.2) BAEA 1 (436), NOHA 3 (33), SSHA 19 (120), BWHA 1 (7), SWHA 1 (4), RTHA 11 (209), FEHA 2 (10), GOEA 5 (2722), PEFA 1 (8), PRFA 1 (15) TOTAL 45 (3791)

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