Friday, September 26, 2014
Rockfish Gap Hawk Watch 2014
I volunteer as a hawk counter at the Rockfish Gap Hawk Watch in Virginia. We are a third of the way through our season and now are on the backside of our Broad-winged Hawk peak. The current tally for the season is 18,000+ Broadies, several thousand above our season average, but a far cry away from the 32,000 record. Falcons are doing well this year with Am. Kestrels right on about average. Merlins and Peregrines are both above average for the date, with their peak in 1-2 weeks. We've hit 2nd highest season for Osprey already with plenty of time left, if we're lucky we just may break season record of 348 (we're at 293 as of now). Bald Eagles are doing well with 142 recorded in and PLENTY of time left. Low Harrier year. Sharp-shins are off to a great start, peak still to come. Low Cooper's. Good early season flights of Red-shoulder and Red-tail with these species not to peak until November. 1 early Golden Eagle on Sept 7th, a nice adult flew overhead. Highlight this year has to be the Mississippi Kites. Our 9th ever MIKI at the hawk watch flew past and was photographed on first day of the hawk watch Aug 15th. Second one of the season making for our first ever multi Kite year on Aug 16th! Today we had our third, an immature that allowed for photographs. Looking forward to Accipiter, Falcon, Red-tail, and Golden Eagle season. Bring on the Goshawks, too! Check us out on the web www.rockfishgaphawkwatch.org and join our Facebook page.