[CT Birds] Boothe Park Hawk Watch 09/20/15 - 347 raptors

Scott Kruitbosch skruitbosch at rtpi.org
Sun Sep 20 18:36:52 EDT 2015


Boothe Memorial Park
Stratford, Connecticut, USA
Daily Raptor Counts: Sep 20, 2015

Species            Day's Count    Month Total   Season Total
------------------ ----------- -------------- --------------
Black Vulture                0              2              2
Turkey Vulture               1              4              4
Osprey                      19            352            352
Bald Eagle                  36             85             85
Northern Harrier             0              4              4
Sharp-shinned Hawk          79            183            183
Cooper's Hawk               10             15             15
Northern Goshawk             0              0              0
Red-shouldered Hawk          0              0              0
Broad-winged Hawk          170            211            211
Red-tailed Hawk              2              2              2
Rough-legged Hawk            0              0              0
Golden Eagle                 0              0              0
American Kestrel            17             39             39
Merlin                       6             13             13
Peregrine Falcon             1              2              2
Unknown Accipiter            0              0              0
Unknown Buteo                0              0              0
Unknown Falcon               1              1              1
Unknown Eagle                0              0              0
Unknown Raptor               5             11             11

Total:                     347            924            924

Observation start time: 09:45:00
Observation end   time: 17:00:00
Total observation time: 7.25 hours

Official Counter:        Scott Kruitbosch, Tom Murray

Observers:        Frank Mantlik, Ron Pelletier, Tina Green, Tom Murray,
                   Woody Fitzgerald

Seven visitors chatted with us as many gawkers passed by. All observers
were regular pros.

A weak, precipitation-less (shocking) cold front passed through around
daybreak today, bringing a shift to N winds immediately sustained in the
teens and gusts to 20-25MPH. These eased a bit as the day went on. The
clouds associated with the front died all too rapidly, leaving us with the
blue sky of death basically from noon onward. Temperatures climbed into the
low 70s with humidity holding mostly between 45-50% making for a gorgeous

Raptor Observations:
Congratulations to Lighthouse Point and all of our friends who got to enjoy
CT's first Zone-tailed Hawk today, a bird we watched for and did not spot.
All TUVU were TUVU, and there were only a few locals and one migrant. We
set our daily Bald Eagle record, carefully critiquing our way to 36
migrants passing the 09/14/14 record of 22. Some tried to fool us with
loops or hanging out. A couple RTHA were migrant birds, and other locals
plus a couple local OSPR were tallied. We seem to have exhausted our OSPR
supply somewhat after the endless surge of birds we had to fuel the
lackluster count thus far this season. It was also good to see some COHA
which had been very slow to start in 2015, though our percentages were
mirroring other sites.

Birds climbed rapidly even in the 11 o'clock hour on building thermals, and
we were in deep trouble. The ones we found midday were near the horizon,
often pushed to the S due to wind, and on a tiny wispy cloud or
two...literally. We missed probably 90-95% of them during much of the day.
Anything going over or behind us was a disaster. We often did the good old
spot a bird and then a few others only because someone miraculously found
the first. Starting around perhaps 3:15 some dropped to binocular or even
distant naked eye range, giving us a boost. Near the end of the afternoon
same came right through the park reminding us that they are not all tiny

Non-raptor Observations:
Southbound migrants included:
COMMON NIGHTHAWK  1 - as spotted by Ron a couple minutes after 5:00 as we
closed up shop.
Chimney Swift  31
Ruby-throated Hummingbird  7
Tree Swallow  39
Cedar Waxwing  12

Migrants in the park included:
None noted, as expected, with the cold frontal passage occurring at
daybreak. This will change tomorrow in a big way!

It may be decent for a while, but the problem is even in the morning the
flow will likely shift E as the high moves to upstate NY and N NE. This
never works out too well for us, and certainly not for BWHA. Clouds should
increase as the day goes on as an upper trough approaches. I'd guess an OK
start based on winds and buildup followed by an OK day thanks to a few more
clouds. Winds will stay at about the same speed with the pressure gradient
increasing a bit.
Report submitted by Scott Kruitbosch (skruitbosch at rtpi.org)
Boothe Memorial Park information may be found at:

Scott Kruitbosch
Conservation & Outreach Coordinator
Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History
311 Curtis Street
Jamestown, NY 14701
716-665-2473 x224
skruitbosch at rtpi.org
rtpi.org <http://www.rtpi.org>
Celebrating Wild America 2015

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