Date: 9/23/19 5:02 pm
From: reports--- via VA-bird <va-bird...>
Subject: [VA-bird] Mendota Fire Tower (23 Sep 2019) 541 Raptors
Mendota Fire Tower
Mendota, VA, Virginia, USA
Daily Raptor Counts: Sep 23, 2019

Species Day's Count Month Total Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture 0 0 0
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 1 6 6
Bald Eagle 2 16 16
Northern Harrier 0 0 0
Sharp-shinned Hawk 4 15 15
Cooper's Hawk 2 6 6
Northern Goshawk 0 0 0
Red-shouldered Hawk 1 3 3
Broad-winged Hawk 529 5175 5175
Red-tailed Hawk 0 4 4
Rough-legged Hawk 0 0 0
Golden Eagle 0 2 2
American Kestrel 0 1 1
Merlin 1 2 2
Peregrine Falcon 0 3 3
Unknown Accipiter 1 3 3
Unknown Buteo 0 0 0
Unknown Falcon 0 2 2
Unknown Eagle 0 0 0
Unknown Raptor 0 1 1

Total: 541 5239 5239

Observation start time: 08:00:00
Observation end time: 16:45:00
Total observation time: 8.75 hours

Official Counter: Rob Biller

Observers: George Larkin, Karen Hampton, Larry McDaniel, Teresa Hutson

Janet Brown, Janet Solimar, JC Rodriguez, Donny Linkons, Tina Linkons

Pat Hampton assisted as an observer for 60 minutes

Temperature changed from approx. 60 degree F to 82 degree F from 8am
through 4:45pm EST

Cloud cover changed from approx. 5% to 20% to 5 % as day progressed, + hazy
conditions at the beginning and end of day.

Wind from 5-10 mph SE to 10-15 mph SE TO 5-10mph SE with a few brief gusts.

Raptor Observations:

With only 1 Broad-wing in the first hour(8-9EST), the second hour began
with birds significantly above eye level and quickly got higher in the
proceeding hours of the day. It wasn’t until last couple hours that the
birds slowly started descending the height of their flights and we could
see a few without binocular aid (first bird was sighted by George Larkins
at 8:50 EST).

Per usual, most birds were seen on south side of Clinch Mountain or
directly overhead. The main push today was between 9 and 11AM(EST) with 427
Broad-wing hawks.Direction of travel was from NE toward SW, generally
following the Clinch Mountain range. As we predicted by the 12(EST) hour
the birds were already very high, there were very little cloud aid, and
several migrants were probably missed due to their flight altitude and our
lack of seeing them. The afternoon hours were a brutal exercise in
dedication as balmy blue skies made the hawk watchers struggle to even find
hawks, let alone count them. To get as many as we were able to after the
12pm(EST) hour [75], shows the expertise of George, Teresa, and Larry. I
wouldn’t have found half that number if they weren’t there.

Non-raptor Observations:
Dragonflies seemed lower in numbers that those recorded on Saturday (Sept
21). The Monarch flights were lower too with only 12 counted today)A total
of 39 monarchs were recorded.

Other birds: The Local ravens were back with vocalizations and acrobatics
throughout the morning and afternoon. Complete list follows:

Phoebe, Yellow-throated Vireo x3, Blue-headed Vireo, Ruffed Grouse x5 ( 3
were also seen on driving down the mountain but were close enough to the
morning birds near the old road trail that I decided not to increase the
number - but my car, after stopping to view the birds, barely made them
move out from where they were dusting themselves), Downy Woodpecker,
Pileated Woodpecker, Carolina Wrens, Hairy Woodpecker, Magnolia Warbler,
Common Ravens, Northern Flicker, Dark-eyed Juncos, Chimney Swifts, Carolina
Chickadees, Tufted Titmouse, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, and Blue Jays,
local Black and Turkey Vultures

The action may be slowing down but there still hawks to be counted. Should
be good conditions in the morning with increasing clouds and a threat of
light rain tomorrow afternoon
Report submitted by Ronald Eugene Harrington (<roneharrin...>)

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