Date: 8/31/19 6:32 pm From: Ryan Tomazin <wvwarblers...> Subject: Allegheny Co. - Hilltop Park Nighthawk Watch
Well, 9 other people joined me tonight to see nighthawks, and though the majority of birds had gone through earlier, everyone got to see a handful of birds directly overhead. I even roped in a local walker that I'd met last night, and he got to see a few overhead. Thanks to everyone for coming!
Common Grackle - 672, estimated, with 3 groups between 100 and 160
Cooper's Hawk - one buzzed by in a hurry
15 other normal species
6:43 - 5 birds flying north to south
6:54 - 14 birds flying north to south
*7:00 - 7 birds flying south to north (not counted as new birds)
7:04 - 9 birds flying north to south
7:16 - 4 birds flying west to east
7:24 - 4 birds flying north to south
7:34 - 7 birds flying east, then hanging around feeding
7:42 - 1 bird flying west to southeast
7:50 - 1 bird flying west to east
7:54 - 3 birds flying west to east
*8:00 - 10 birds still hunting to the east (not counted as new birds, and they were still feeding at 8:20, when we left)
8:02 - 3 birds flying west to east
51 birds +
NOW, for the story I promised I'd post: in the deeply fading light, Joe Papp, Dante Zuccaro, John Flannigan, Matt Juskowich and I were standing on the edge of the bowl field, and I was standing up on a curb. A CONI that was hunting the bowl blew by at my eye level literally inches from the side of my head, between me and Joe. I'd like to say that that is the closest I've ever been to a nighthawk, but I had a similar experience three times one evening last September. Good times!
Tomorrow is supposed to be stormy, and if it is, I won't count. Monday on looks good, so I might go out nightly. I'll let people know.