We've been counting raptors for almost a month now, and the numbers have been really, really low. I've been promising everyone that the peak of raptor migration, will be within a day or two of the equinox, because that's how it always goes, but I was getting worried.
We weren't seeing enough birds. In particular, the accipiters (the Cooper's Hawk and Sharp-shinned Hawk), which form the bulk of the equinox peak, were nowhere to be seen. The counts consisted mainly of the Turkey Vultures and Red-tailed Hawks which are ubiquitous around Hawk Hill. Had something gone wrong? Had this summer's forest fires disrupted the breeding season and delayed the migration?
Look at the accipiter numbers for last week:
- Sun 8: 2 sharpies, no coops
- Mon 9: no birds (fog)
- Tue 10: no sharpies, 1 coop
- Wed 12: 1 sharpie, 1 coop
- Thu 11: 8 sharpies, 3 coops
- Fri 12: 5 sharpies, 3 coops
- Sat 13: 40 sharpies, 8 coops
- Sun 14: 111 sharpies, 29 coops
- Mon 15: 133 sharpies, 44 coops
(Note that all statistics quoted are copyright of the GGRO and may not be reproduced without permission.)