Observation start time: 07:30:00 Observation end time: 14:00:00 Total observation time: 6.5 hours
Official Counter: Heidi Hayes, Roger Rouch
Observers: Heidi Hayes, Joel Chapa, Mitchell Blystone, Rob Reilly
Visitors: A few curious hikers.
Weather: In spite of moderate temperatures in the mid 30's and 40's, a brisk northeastern wind around 3 Bft, a mostly cloudy day, and higher humidity gave a chill to the air. Moderate atmospheric haze.
Raptor Observations: The flight pattern today included many raptors close to the ridge above and below eye level, apparently using ridge lift and wind rather than thermals. Some made northern flight seem effortless against a northern wind. Flat light and some haze lead to many identifications by silhouette and flight characteristics. Local falcons were sighted more than once and a Peregrine and Prairie Falcon gave every indication of migrating and were added to the tally. Local Red-tailed were active often below eye level. Also a local Cooper's and a few local Turkey Vultures.
Non-raptor Observations: Songbirds travelling in small groups of 2s,3s or more were common especially in the early hours. Some were speculated as Yellow-rumped Warblers and two Yellow-rumped landed in the dead pine near the platform. Some unk. swallows and others not identified. Also seen or heard were Broad-tailed Hummingbird, Western Meadow Lark, American Robin, Common Raven, Woodhouse's Scrubjay, White-throated Swift,Black-Billed Magpie, Rock Pigeon, Morning Dove, chickadee, and Dark-eyed Junco. ======================================================================== Report submitted by Matthew Smith (<matt.smith...>) 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.