I dont know if it had any thing to do with the hawks but we did have a strong cold front go through the panhandleThursday night and it snowed in the Blackhills. That may have pushed the Swainsons eastward. Kathy DeLaraMitchell, Ne
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone -------- Original message --------From: "'Don & Janis Paseka' <paseka76...> [NEBirds]" <NEBirds...> Date: 9/29/18 8:36 AM (GMT-07:00) To: NEBirds <NEBirds...> Subject: Re: [NEBirds] Hawks and Migrating Birds
Thanks to Gary for posting about the hawk flight yesterday while our internet connection was down. (Also to Jer for posting to the Hawkwatch group.)
Our farm is about 12 miles northwest of Fremont in Dodge Co. Starting at 3:30 pm we began seeing kettles of Broad-wings. We went out on our deck and, looking east, started counting by ones, then by tens and eventually by hundreds. They were still flying, but beginning to setting in trees, between 6 and 6:30. There were huge kettles, mingling with other kettles. There were birds distant to the east and birds flying low right over us.
By far most of the hawks we saw were Broad-wings. Our total (conservative) estimate is 12,000. There were a few Swainson's mixed in, and at around 5:30 Don left to go a mile east to do a neighbor's chores. There he saw thousands of Swainson's (conservative estimate 2000) sitting on the ground, on fenceposts and even in trees. In one 10-minute period while I was fixing supper, I counted 700 Swainson's out the kitchen window.
In addition to the above 2 species, there were skeins of Franklin's Gulls moving through for the entire period. Conservative estimate: 30,000. There were also a few Turkey Vultures (40), two Northern Harriers, two Bald Eagles and 75 Double-crested Cormorants. Who knows what other birds we missed.
This morning we could see over 100 Broad-wings perching in trees in the pasture.. At around 9 am, they began to move out. We are pondering why this all happened. Why did such huge numbers of an eastern and a western species converge here? Any theories?
Don took a few photos yesterday, which we will attempt to post.
Don & Janis PasekaAmes NE
On Fri, Sep 28, 2018 at 8:55 PM <garoberts...> [NEBirds] <NEBirds...> wrote:
Greetings birders: I'm posting this on behalf of the Paseka's. Thought i had seen a slew of hawks early this afternoon but Don and Janis hit the jackpot. Don said they saw 10000 Broadwing Hawks, 2000 Swainson's and estimated 30000 Franklin Gulls flying along the east side of their farm this afternoon around the time i saw all the Swainson's at my place. Many sat down in their trees for the night but the birds were also heading in a south easterly direction. Would guess they should pass somewhere between Valley and Omaha tomorrow. Gary Roberts on behalf of the Paseka'sDodge County