Observation start time: 08:00:00 Observation end time: 13:45:00 Total observation time: 5.75 hours
Official Counter: Roger Rouch
Observers: Heidi Hayes, Joel Chapa, Rob Riley
Visitors: A couple of visitors stopped by briefly to ask what we had been seeing.
Weather: A pleasant early spring day with temperatures rising from the mid-50's to the low 60's and a light wind around 2 Bft mostly from the SE. Clear early, gradually becoming mostly cloudy. Patches of snow linger on the neighboring ridges.
Raptor Observations: Much of the migration was in the mid and late morning along an unusual path from south of Green Mountain and then somewhat high along Rooney Valley or over Green Mountain. In the afternoon a few more migrating Red-tailed Hawks were sighted over the west ridge lines. Local red-tail activity seemed relatively light and included a pair perched and hunting from two power line poles east of the ridge. A local Golden Eagle drifted east over green mountain early. Also, local Kestrel(s) and a Cooper's Hawk.
Non-raptor Observations: Also seen or heard were Townsend's Solitaire, Woodhouse's Scrubjay, chickadee, Common Raven, and Black-billed Magpie. About seven American Crow circled south of Mt. Morrison for some time. In the first few minutes of the watch a Canyon Wren was singing on the east side of the ridge (which is a good way to start a day). A bunch of maybe 10 fast flying song birds went from south to north over the ridge and were quite likely Mountain Bluebirds but not positively identified.
Predictions: With no big weather change in the works, tomorrow could be similar to other days this week. ======================================================================== 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.