Observation start time: 07:15:00 Observation end time: 16:00:00 Total observation time: 8.75 hours
Official Counter: Henry Walters
Observers: Al Grimstad, Cynthia Nichols, Julie Brown, Mike Gebo, Nancy Moreau, Sharon Harvell, Tom Baillio, Wendy Ward, with many more...
Visitors: Not one of us here on Pack Monadnock has a competitive bone in his or her body, which is why we were delighted to hear of the 9,000+ broad-wings eclipsing Mt. Wachusett in the past two days, though they couldn't be bothered to put in an appearance in New Hampshire. Certain mention perhaps was made, in whispered tones, of "that mountain to the south hoovering up all the hawks within fifty miles," but we took solace in the sun's warmth, Julie's peaches, Mike's brownies, and our own clear consciences. 38 visitors to the hawkwatch today.
Weather: Hot and hazy, with light winds turning from NW to SW during the course of the day. Birds not getting a great deal of lift, despite the warm temperatures. A low-lying stratum of ozone didn't help the visibility.
Raptor Observations: Broad-wings refused to get organized today, popping up in twos and threes all around the horizon, but with no clear flight-line or sense of civic engagement. This new generation and their rugged individualism...
Other species picked up the slack, though, with good numbers of ospreys, harriers, and small falcons coming through. A gray ghost low in the Contoocook valley made us shout, and adult and juvenile Red-shouldered Hawks were something of a surprise this early in the season. A merlin tormented an osprey halfway across the sky with its antics; when he finally peeled off to catch dragonflies, you could almost hear the osprey, resuming its dignified bearing, mutter under its breath, "The nerve!"
Non-raptor Observations: Passerine migrants included Tree Swallow, Northern Parula, Tennessee, Black-and-white, and Yellow-rumped Warbler. Three shorebirds too distant to identify. American Lady and Painted Lady butterflies, along with Monarch and Eastern Tiger Swallowtail. White-marked Tussock Moth caterpillar moseyed around the platform in his clownish costume.
Predictions: With very light winds and a good bit of sun in the days ahead, there's no clear weather trend to indicate an obvious candidate for the "Big Day." Come up when you can! ======================================================================== Report submitted by Henry Walters (<walters.henry...>) Pack Monadnock Raptor Migration Observatory information may be found at: www.nhaudubon.org