Observation start time: 10:00:00
Observation end time: 19:00:00
Total observation time: 9 hours
Official Counter: Larry Lewis
Observers: George Graham
THE LAND CONSERVANCY FOR SOUTHERN CHESTER COUNTY’S HAWK WATCH AT BUCKTOE
Visitors (2): George Graham.
Thanks everyone, for coming to beautiful Bucktoe Creek Preserve!
----“Raptors” seen, but deemed not to be migrating: 2-Cooper's Hawk,
1-Red-shouldered Hawk, 4-Red-tailed Hawk, and numerous Black (65) and
Turkey Vultures (70).
----Bald Eagle ages: 1 yr.-0; 2 yr.-0; 3 yr.-0; 4 yr.-0; adult-2
----“BUCKTOE BIRD BLOG” (BBB) - (Comments on the events & “feel” of the day
– read on, if you dare) We see birds, many of them hawks; encounter other
wildlife; discuss plants; while striving to laugh and have FUN with it all!
Notes on the raptors will be here, other birds and wildlife we notice or
discuss, and humorous (I hope) stories and anecdotes. This isn’t brain
surgery. Trust me, I know about that. I’ve already been “dead” once (it’s
overrated). So, you WILL have to forgive me, but I AM going to have the
ultimate fun with what remains of this life!
TODAY’S ‘BBB:’ ---“When Nature Calls? You Just Might Want to ANSWER
A Lincoln’s Sparrow was again at our Watch feeders this morning, eating the
cracked corn spread on the ground. Palm Warblers were in the meadow, their
chip call notes reaching my ears on occasion, while Phoebes are enjoying
the guide wires of the MOTUS tower, and I, my coffee.
Shortly after 10am, the Broad-wings started and with them, numbers of
Sharp-shinned Hawks. Over the next hour or so I saw several hundred hawks,
the view aided spectacularly by a fine tapestry of white clouds. Ospreys
were interwoven into the fabric of the flight, too. Not joining the
kettle, in fact streaking past faster than this species typically does, was
a Kestrel lower to the ground.
I was in communication with Ashland, which hadn’t had any Broad-wings, yet;
and CAOS, which had been doing about as well as I, but had to call it a
day. Mike, as the only surviving member of CAOS, has many irons in the
fire and many duties to occupy his time.
Amid all this, George arrived.
“Hurry George, they’re flying…you’ll see lots of Broad-wings!” I
You guessed it…things dried up just then. There was nothing for George,
but a few distant Ospreys.
When will I learn? Still, we persisted…
During these doldrums, George mentioned that he’d had a somewhat late
Nighthawk fly over his Chester Springs home this week. (GG)
George tried my field coffee
“How is it, George?” I asked.
“I haven’t tried it yet. It’s too hot.” Came the reply.
“You might want to stop right there, George….you’re tasting it at its peak
then – not having sampled any! It’s downhill from there!”
A Palm Warbler, taking a que from a wildly thrashing Song Sparrow, took to
our amazing water feature and bathed himself. A Swamp Sparrow was new for
the Watch today – also in the feeders.
Around 2:00-ish, nature began calling. I headed towards our rest room in
the field some 100 yards distant. I saw a Phoebe on our MOTUS tower and
sought to share it with George. More attempts to answer nature’s call
followed, each as unsuccessful as the previous. First a “ketlet” (a new
term I’ll give partial-full credit to Joe Sebastiani for coining yesterday
with my “kettle” of 6 Broadwings, we had discussed) – now, there were 3
Broad-wings…we’ll call that a micro-ketlet. I simply had to share this
sighting with George – that’s why he was here. And remember he had just
missed the several hundred birds I saw this morning. George saw these
I tried for the rest room again. This time Sharp-shinned Hawks would
interfere. Third time the charm?? No way…an Osprey kept me from the
relief I so desperately sought. Nature was still calling. I tried to go
again. A Palm Warbler wouldn’t allow it.
Then nature called back! NO, you’re not listening - it REALLY called
back!!! I had made it, finally, to our rest room. Telling George as I
left, “Watch the sky, it’s yours till I get back!”
I took care of “business,” barely (pun?), when I heard George screaming my
name. He had apparently “ran” with my advice! He had word on what “his
“Larry, get out here quick. I just had 50 Broad-wings in a kettle…right
here!” George yelled, very excitedly.
I got out and looking, appropriately, back over the outhouse, saw
Broad-winged Hawks EVERYWHERE! Ketlet, my butt (lol), there were full
kettles filling the sky in all directions - Sharpies and Ospreys within the
twisting, writhing bio-masses, too. My “clicker” was put into overdrive.
Quick where’s my lube?? This thing has already seen better days…this thing
is an “old-school” counter, to begin with. My hand nearly cramped up from
all the clicks I made…..well over 4,000 Broad-wings!!!
During all this, my cell phone alarm sounded at 3pm, signaling the end of
my day here at Bucktoe. I’m going NOWHERE! You don’t leave THIS – you GO
to THIS!!! I’m staying overtime today!!!
Shortly after 4pm, it was over for today. However we watched very many of
these birds land in the woods here at Bucktoe. Tomorrow morning’s liftoff
could be fabulous! Be here!! Tomorrow is predicted to be great again, but
very warm…..Sweat Bees, rejoice!!
And while most people just “go” when nature calls…the intrepid birder
merely answers the call! INCREDIBLE DAY and full-partial credit there,
George!! So glad you were here to share this experience with me -
answering the call of nature.
And just to put a ribbon on this magical day, as I write this in the
diminishing light at my Bucktoe “field office,” a female Harrier courses
the meadow, close at hand and 4 Common Nighthawks flew over. Keeping your
earlier Nighthawk report in mind George, that brings things full circle,
---- Thanks to The Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County for their
support, and especially, to the Brokaws, for not only their incredible
support, but gracious generosity in opening their property to the public
for this watch, and oh, so very much more!
----ADDITIONAL BIRD HIGHLIGHTS:
4-COMMON NIGHTHAWK, 1-Ruby-crowned Kinglet, 6-Palm Warbler, 1-Swamp
Sparrow, 1-Lincoln's Sparrow, 1-Blue Grosbeak, 10-Bobolink.
----OTHER WILDLIFE NOTED: Butterflies (12): Monarch - 75, Cabbage White,
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Eastern Tailed Blue, Clouded Sulphur, Pearl
Crescent, Orange Sulphur, Common Checkered Skipper, Buckeye, Variegated
Fritillary, Wild Indigo Duskywing, Sachem. Dragonflies (3): Green Darner,
Black Saddlebags, Halloween Pennant. Repptiles & Amphibians (0): Mammals
(1): Eastern Cottontail.
----EBNT’s “Walk with Nature” ™ Program Daily Tally with our Fitbits:
This is a stationary watch, but if I stay stationary too long, I might tend
to “bulk up.” Besides, I am ever so fortunate to be walking unaided, at
all! Therefore, I keep moving (if you’ve been here, then you know that I
pace endlessly….) - my Fitbit thanks me and its part of my “Walk with
Nature” program. So, below are MY results at the watch for the day. Your
totals could all be zero, if you choose to sit and relax. You are
certainly welcome to take it easy….I simply choose not to, affording me a
panoramic view of our entire sky and a bit of exercise. So come join our
“Walk with Nature!” ™ Anyway, just for fun, here are my numbers at the site
for today (join me, if you wish): Miles: 5.55; Steps: 13,019; Floors:
----“SEASON’S BIRD SPECIES LIST” – we at Bucktoe are not just a Hawk Watch,
but conduct a migration tally from the site. We include it here, from time
to time (about once a week), to let you know what else we’re seeing here at
the Bucktoe Watch. Our tally board, on site, will feature an approximation
(very rough, best “guestimate,” – searching for Hawks must remain our
primary focus) for totals of each species seen for “The Watch” year.
TOTAL SPECIES – Identified from watch site: today: 53; this season: 110
NEW SPECIES ADDED TODAY TO THIS YEAR’S “WATCH SPECIES LIST (1):” Swamp
Tomorrow’s flight looks the very same, but less cloud cover predicted, for
what that's worth. Less cloud cover was predicted today!
Come join us, folks! We’re here every day thru Nov. 30, 9am thru 3pm.
Rain or shine.
This report is being sent individually to participants and people deemed to
be interested parties. If you wish off the list, kindly notify me and you
will be removed. However, this one mailing list is how I notify every one
of our events, our walk schedule, tours and rare birds.
The Hawk Watch at Bucktoe Creek Preserve is sponsored by THE LAND
CONSERVANCY FOR SOUTHERN CHESTER COUNTY. Please contact us at
<earlybirdtours...> with questions or comments.
Report submitted by Larry Lewis (<earlybirdtours...>)
High open meadow near Red Clay Creek
Directions to site:
From Kennett Square, PA (in southern Chester County):
Take Union Street south out of town. This becomes Kaolin Road. Make a right
onto Hillendale Road. Proceed about 1.5 miles to Sharp Road and make a
left. At the second hilltop on Sharp Road, the entrance is on the left
across from Candlewyck development. (432 Sharp Rd.) Upon entering driveway,
make a right on gravel road opposite first driveway you see on left. Follow
gravel road (and the "Hawk Watch" signs for about 1/2 mile to the pavilion
on the left and the parking area in the grass to the right.