Date: 5/16/18 4:30 am
From: 'Derek Lovitch' via Maine birds <maine-birds...>
Subject: [Maine-birds] Fwd: Bradbury Mountain State Park (15 May 2018) 34 Raptors

> Bradbury Mountain State Park
> Pownal, Maine, USA
> Daily Raptor Counts: May 15, 2018
> Species Day's Count Month Total Season Total
> Black Vulture 0 0 0
> Turkey Vulture 0 0 564
> Osprey 4 67 342
> Bald Eagle 0 1 76
> Northern Harrier 1 7 85
> Sharp-shinned Hawk 2 127 469
> Cooper's Hawk 0 8 77
> Northern Goshawk 0 2 8
> Red-shouldered Hawk 0 4 80
> Broad-winged Hawk 22 417 1645
> Red-tailed Hawk 0 6 190
> Rough-legged Hawk 0 0 0
> Golden Eagle 0 0 0
> American Kestrel 1 79 321
> Merlin 1 20 56
> Peregrine Falcon 2 9 11
> Unknown Accipiter 0 1 8
> Unknown Buteo 0 2 8
> Unknown Falcon 1 1 2
> Unknown Eagle 0 0 0
> Unknown Raptor 0 10 25
> Total: 34 761 3967
> Observation start time: 08:00:00
> Observation end time: 15:00:00
> Total observation time: 7 hours
> Official Counter Zane Baker
> Observers: Dave Fensore, Derek Lovitch, Mike Chace, Steve Barker
> Visitors:
> Thanks to Jeannette and Derek Lovitch of Freeport Wild Bird Supply for starting this project in conjunction with Bradbury Mountain State Park. The project is also supported by some anonymous private donors, whose generosity is greatly appreciated. A special thanks to Dave Fensore, who stuck it out with me, even during some uncomfortable and slow days, spotting many birds which could have been missed. His generosity in sharing his optics and his patience when helping bystanders spot birds while I was busy, was greatly appreciated. Plus, he brings in the Peregrines. Thank you to everyone who came up the hill to help spot birds this season, it was a good team effort, and great to see everyone again. Iv'e enjoyed every moment on top of The Brad. This has been a terrific season, once again.
> Weather:
> The final day of the 2018 was one of my favorite weather days this season, except for the rain which shut us down an hour early in a similar fashion to last year. The morning was pretty calm with partly cloudy skies. It was rather warm and muggy when I arrived. Winds were light, out of the SW and SSW for about half the day. Looking at the radar around noon, I kind of expected to be packing up in the coming hour, but somehow, Bradbury threaded the needle, and squeezed through a small break in the approaching rainstorm. Once safely through, the sky became partly sunny and the temperatures rose into the low 70s. Dark clouds and falling rain could be seen in the surrounding areas. Around 2 pm EST wind speeds increased slightly and shifted to the N and NE. The skies to the NW of the mountain began to darken, the radar now a mix of blue, green, and yellow. Rain started coming down, and it didn't look like it would be clearing anytime soon.The count officially closed one hour early due to rain. We certainly got lucky today, getting a few more hours than anticipated.
> Raptor Observations:
> The last day felt like a success to me, even if we didn't find a rarity, though we certainly tried. More young Broad-wings finally made their way north today, but not quite enough to get us over that 4000 mark. Two more Peregrines were spotted, one Adult and one immature, both passing by relatively close. Our last bird of the season was a young Harrier,spotted moving inland just before the rain. We ended this year a little shy of the ten year average, which is 4132. There were certainly times this year which made it feel as though we were right on track to hit, or even exceed that number, like the two back to back big days we had on 4/23 and 4/24, of which the latter produced 674 birds. However, this year we didn't have periods of sustained SW winds for any significant periods of time. The early part of the count, and right into peak migration time, which is typically mid April, we had a lot of northerly wind, which could have slowed birds progress or pushed them further towards the coast, slightly beyond our reach. In the past week or so, we had quite a bit of southeasterly wind, this time potentially pushing birds inland before they made it to the mountain. It is hard to tell why overall numbers appear to be low in a given season, but migration is very weather dependent, and our weather wasn't ideal for northbound birds.There were a couple species well above and below the average which had us scratching our heads, but it's hard to tease out cause and effect from a single season. It am curious to see how this year changes our averages, and to see what next year has in store. Very interesting.
> Non-raptor Observations:
> A pair of Common Ravens brought some humor to my day this morning. The two birds came in from the east, very close to the summit, both birds vocalizing loudly. As I watched one of the Ravens in my binoculars, the bird flipped over onto its back and let out a loud, extended and descending GROOOONK, as it fell towards the earth. Classic Raven shenanigans. There were 42 species identified from the summit today, including a first-of-season Bobolink and Chestnut-sided Warbler.
> Predictions:
> I'm a little nervous a rarity will be reported, now that the season has just finished. Happy birding everyone.
> Report submitted by Jeannette Lovitch (<freeportwildbird...>)
> Bradbury Mountain State Park information may be found at:
> More information at [Site Profile] [Day Summary] [Month Summary]

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