Observation start time: 08:45:00 Observation end time: 14:00:00 Total observation time: 5.25 hours
Official Counter: Roger Rouch
Weather: A mild partly cloudy day with temps from 35 to 51 F. Calmer than the gale force type winds of the past days, but still a steady wind mostly from the NW around 3 and 4 Bft. through the day.
Raptor Observations: Possibly a migration catch-up after the recent high winds, with several migrating Red-tailed plus an adult American Golden Eagle. The time between 10:30 and 11:30 was especially active for both migrating and local Red-tailed Hawks, with some locals travelling well past I-70 either as escorts for migrants or on their own, only to return south. The migration route was almost exclusively along the valley between Mt. Morrison and the Ridge at various elevations including eye level. Speculation was that this provided some wind protection or other favorable flight in the NW winds.
Non-raptor Observations: Also seen were Western Scrub Jay, Black-capped Chickadee, Mountain Chickadee, Common Raven, American Robin, Townsend's Solitaire.
Predictions: Possibly similar to today? ======================================================================== Report submitted by Bird Conservancy of the Rockies (<jeff.birek...>) Dinosaur Ridge information may be found at: http://www.birdconservancy.org/
Site Description: Dinosaur Ridge is the only regularly staffed hawkwatch in Colorado and is the best place in the world to see migrating Ferruginous Hawks. Dinosaur Ridge may be the best place in the country to see the rare dark morph of the Broad-winged Hawk (a few are seen each spring). Hawkwatchers who linger long enough may see resident Golden Eagles, Red-tailed Hawks and Prairie Falcons, in addition to migrating Swainson's, Cooper's and Sharp-shinned Hawks, American Kestrels and Turkey Vultures. Peregrine Falcons and Ferruginous Hawks are uncommon; Northern Goshawk is rare but regular. Non-raptor species include Rock Wren, and sometimes Bushtit, Western Bluebird, Sandhill Crane, White-throated Swift, American White Pelican or Dusky Grouse. Birders are always welcome. The hawkwatch is generally staffed by volunteers from Bird Conservancy of the Rockies from about 9 AM to around 3 PM from March 1st to May 7th.
Directions to site: From exit 259 on I-70 towards Morrison, drive south under freeway and take left into first parking lot, the Stegosaurus lot. Follow small signs from the south side of lot to hawkwatch site. The hike starts heading east on an old two-track and quickly turns south onto a trail on the west side of the ridge. When the trail nears the top of the ridge, turn left, head through the gate, and walk to the clearly-visible, flat area at the crest of the ridge.