Date: 4/14/17 4:42 pm
From: <reports...>
Subject: [cobirds] Dinosaur Ridge - Bird Conservancy of the Rockies (14 Apr 2017) 15 Raptors
Dinosaur Ridge - Bird Conservancy of the Rockies
Colorado, USA
Daily Raptor Counts: Apr 14, 2017
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Species Day's Count Month Total Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture 0 0 0
Turkey Vulture 3 29 29
Osprey 0 2 2
Bald Eagle 0 4 13
Northern Harrier 0 0 0
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1 17 27
Cooper's Hawk 0 30 35
Northern Goshawk 0 0 0
Red-shouldered Hawk 0 0 0
Broad-winged Hawk 0 1 1
Red-tailed Hawk 10 52 232
Rough-legged Hawk 0 0 0
Swainson's Hawk 0 3 3
Ferruginous Hawk 0 2 7
Golden Eagle 0 0 3
American Kestrel 1 23 35
Merlin 0 0 0
Peregrine Falcon 0 4 6
Prairie Falcon 0 2 3
Mississippi Kite 0 0 0
Unknown Accipiter 0 2 6
Unknown Buteo 0 8 23
Unknown Falcon 0 4 7
Unknown Eagle 0 0 0
Unknown Raptor 0 2 9

Total: 15 185 441
----------------------------------------------------------------------

Observation start time: 09:00:00
Observation end time: 15:00:00
Total observation time: 6 hours

Official Counter: Debbie James

Observers:

Visitors:
The yearly Easter pilgrimage of Pray the Rosary was already up at the
station when I arrived. They spend about a half hour praying the rosary,
while I counted and identified birds, before taking off with their
rough-hewned cross for the next station. Many hikers and bikers since it
was a beautiful day.


Weather:
Warm all day, even in the morning. Completely clear skies until the 1200
hour, and even then only 1%. There was heavy smog in the Denver basin,
which when the winds picked up in the afternoon, blew up in the foothills
and the 1-70 corridor.

Raptor Observations:
What a fine day with the locals! There were 2 TV's, 2 male kestrels, 1
peregrine flying (zooming) north and then turning south on the east side of
the Ridge, 1 Cooper's hawk that flew high overhead going straight east.
And...an estimated 6 Red Tail Hawks that in the afternoon formed a kettle
above Mt. Morrison. In the last hour 4 of these Red Tails were playing in
the high winds on the east side of Ridge..flying north into the wind,
gaining altitude, then rolling, diving and coming up to let the wind carry
them at high speeds south down the valley. They kept this up for nearly the
whole hour. As far as migrators, all but the TV's were on the east side of
Ridge or directly above. Most flew low and were easy to watch without
binoculars (after identification).

Non-raptor Observations:
Big variety of other birds: 4 Western Meadowlark; 5 Black-billed Magpie; 2
House finch; 1 Townsend's Solitaire; 4 Woodhouse's Scrub Jay; 1
Broad-tailed Hummingbird; 2 Bushtits; 1 American Crow; a special treat of 1
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher who announced itself quite loudly; and 1
White-Throated Swift.
There were a plethora of lovely butterflies, many grasshoppers, and one
Eastern Fence Lizard who kept me company, sunning on the large slab rock
next to all my gear. 2 fighter jets went low overhead--I could see bombs
attached all under the wings.

Predictions:
It's supposed to be about 10 degrees cooler, with a 10% chance of precip.
Winds look to be about the same, so hopefully another good day for
migrators.
========================================================================
Report submitted by Bird Conservancy of the Rockies (<jeff.birek...>)
Dinosaur Ridge - Bird Conservancy of the Rockies 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.


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