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Migration eUpdate for Sept 13

Broadwings on the Move

What's Flying this Week 

Clear blue skies and light, variable winds on Monday will give way to mostly sunny skies and light south winds on Tuesday and Wednesday.  A cold front is forecast to move through on Wednesday night dropping the daytime temperatures and bringing north-northwesterly winds on Thursday.  Winds will become light and variable on Friday and shift to south on Saturday and Sunday as another cold front approaches the area.

Broad-winged hawks have just started moving south through northerly watchsites in the upper-midwest and while we won't see those birds, broadwings in the east should start moving in big numbers this week.  Our biggest flights historically have occurred on days with south or southeasterly winds, so Tuesday and Wednesday have the chance to produce triple digit broadwing flights with bigger flights more likely later in the week.  The best chances of getting good looks at broadwings are mid-morning as kettles start forming and later in the day as thermals start dying down.  Bald eagles and osprey should be seen in good numbers on Thursday.  Numbers of sharp-shinned hawks, American kestrels and merlins should be seen daily this week.

The broadwings tagged as part of our telemetry study are on the move and you can monitor their journey! Check out the tracking maps now or visit the Broad-winged Hawk Project Facebook page. 

Last week's flight

A strong cold front on Saturday night produced the biggest flights of the season; 147 raptors were counted including 19 osprey, 19 bald eagles, 50 sharp-shinned hawks, 19 American kestrels and 16 merlins.  The largest broadwing flight of the week occurred on Tuesday with 48 broadwings counted.  Also counted on Tuesday were eight osprey, eight red-tailed hawks, and 13 kestrels.  Other highlights this past week include close looks at red-shouldered hawks on multiple days, a flock of 11 turkey vultures on Thursday, and a peregrine falcon on Sunday. 

Other Migrants 

Morning flights of warblers started to pick up last week as 13 species of warblers were seen and included Tennessee, northern parula, Cape May, black-throated green, black-throated blue, bay-breasted, blackpoll, blackburnian, black-and-white, chestnut-sided, American redstart, magnolia and Canada warblers. Red-breasted nuthatches continue to migrate though with a high of 15 nuthatches counted on Saturday.  Northern flickers have also started migrating; 10 flickers were counted on Thursday and Friday and 11 were counted on Saturday.  Other highlights this past week include 219 cedar waxwings on Tuesday, 52 American goldfinches on Friday, 17 scarlet tanagers on Saturday and 22 common ravens on Sunday.

Black-and-white Warbler by Bill Moses

Count to Date

Total-to-Date is through September 12

SpeciesWeekly TotalTotal-to-Date
Black Vulture07
Turkey Vulture1119
Bald Eagle24107
Northern Harrier214
Sharp-shinned Hawk111199
Cooper's Hawk1027
Northern Goshawk00
Unidentified Accipiter512
Swainson's Hawk00
Red-shouldered Hawk34
Broad-winged Hawk122
Red-tailed Hawk26104
Rough-legged Hawk00
Unidentified Buteo521
Golden Eagle02
Unidentified Eagle00
American Kestrel3991
Peregrine Falcon14
Unidentified Falcon00
Unidentified Hawk518


Upcoming Events

These upcoming weekends are big for fun and interesting events at Hawk Mountain! The cooler weather is also bound to bring many migrants over the lookouts. Seems like the perfect time to plan a visit! 

Sat, Sept 17

10 am to 4 pm
Variety of fall-flowering natives including asters, goldenrods, milkweeds, coneflowers, brown-eyed susans plus the usual selection of native vines, grasses, ferns, trees and shrubs.

3rd Autumn Lecture: Sky Literacy
Sat, Sept 17. FREE. Visitor Center, 5:30 pm

The heavens are ablaze with all types of interesting objects to view and inspire. Join astronomer Gary A. Becker from Moravian College as he explains some of the wonders which can be found under the starry vault.

Digital Photo Contest - Entries now Accepted!
Easy online entry, great prizes, and multiple categories 
Visit: www.hawkmountain.org/photocontest

Hawk Identification for Kids: Sat, Sept 17
Beginning hawk identification workshop designed for older children, including an overview of hawk identification in flight followed by a group walk to a lookout to observe migrating hawks. $10 Members, $20 Non-Members. One parent may accompany free. Registration Required: 610-756-6961.

Monarch Migration Day: Sat, Sept 24
Free information and fun learning activities focused on monarchs and during the peak of their long-distance migration. Also featuring an all-day presentation Monarchs Up Close by John Drummond. 

Zeiss Optics Day: Sat, Sept 24
Come for a great opportunity to meet with a Zeiss optics specialist to test and learn about a variety of their products. The experienced representatives will help you find the best product for your needs and address all your optics questions.

Meet the Fall Forest: Sat, Sept 24
Join Dr. Sacchi from Kutztown University to learn to identify common trees and fall flowering plants at Hawk Mountain as fall arrives. 

Monarch on an Aster.

Don't Miss Out: Mountain Raffle is Here

Look for the signature Swarovski scope and other optics at the Lookout, provided courtesy of our friends at Swarovski Optic. The official optics outfitter of Hawk Mountain has also generously donated the top prize for this year's Mountain Raffle: a pair of 8.5 x 42" EL binoculars. (YES!!)

Pick up your ticket in the Visitor Center or call us at 610-756-6961 to enter by phone. 

Hope to see you soon

Don't forget to call 610-756-6000 x6 after 6 pm to hear the day's count and a weather forecast for the following day or visit the Raptor Count Page for daily, weekly, and season totals. Check it out now

As always, we THANK YOU for your ongoing support and hope to see you on the Mountain sometime very soon.

Gigi Romano
Communications Specialist
[email protected] 

PS:  Consider JOINING US as a Hawk Mountain member.  Members help to support our global raptor conservation mission, and also receive free admission year round, bookstore discount, and subscription to our member magazine.   Join us or renew now.

International conservation science trainee Lamin helping visitors identify passing raptors at South Lookout.  

©2011 Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. All rights reserved.
1700 Hawk Mountain Rd, Kempton, PA 19529 Phone: (610) 756-6961 Fax: (610) 756-4468