Saturday, September 24, 2016

HawkWatch Festival - 18 Sep 2016

Day 1 of the Hawk Watch Festival at Lake Erie Metropark was a washout. Heavy rain the entire day made for a miserable day for anyone stuck in a booth or a tent at the Marshland Museum. No birds were seen. It did clear up late in the afternoon, and winds picked up, but no significant flight was observed. Still, good crowds showed up, and it was great visiting with folks at the boat launch and at the museum.

Sunday was nicer, with clear skies and warming temps, so hope was there for a good flight of Broad-winged Hawks. It never materialized. It warmed to mid 80's and high humidity meant just a few Sharp-shinned Hawks and an occasional Turkey Vulture flew over the entire day.

I left after 2 pm and decided to swing by Pt. Mouillee to see if any birds were flying. Nope. Skies were clear.

While driving back on Reaume Rd., however, I spotted 5 Bald Eagles soaring over the rock quarry! I pulled over and got a few photos of the soaring birds (some at car height), but shots were distorted by moisture in the air. Still, I managed to salvage a couple pics of a pair of immature birds locking talons in mid-flight.

A single Red-tailed Hawk was also among them.

I drove down Haggerman Rd. near the antennae farm and saw both a Northern Harrier fly over and a single American Kestrel.

I would get home just in time to watch the Lions lose in the last minute of play.

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