Big day today at Kiptopeke!
With numerous visitors assisting with the spotting,
we had a new high count today with a total of 1108 raptors! The day started a bit slowly, but after lunch we had a steady stream of birds, including a count of 405 Osprey!
Photo by Steve Thornhill
Brian and I had a lovely group for the Hawk Identification Workshop, and they were able to practice their new identification skills after lunch as we witnessed 13 Northern Harriers, 16 Peregrine Falcons, and 296 American Kestrels on their flights south.
This fantastic shot by Steve is of an adult male Northern Harrier.
The Peregrine Falcon is always an exciting sight at the Hawk Watch. These amazing birds are such an adaptable species, they can live in almost any habitat in the world. They can be found on every
continent except for Antarctica, thriving in cold tundra as well as hot deserts.
The Peregrines that nest on Arctic tundra and then migrate to South America for the winter may fly up to 15,500 miles in a year!
Thanks to conservation efforts, the Peregrine Falcon was removed from the
U.S. Endangered Species List in 1999.
"Perhaps because of their amazing flying and hunting skills, Peregrine Falcons have had cultural significance for humans throughout history. To this day, they are still one of the most popular birds in the sport of falconry, and in ancient times they were considered the birds of royalty. Today, Peregrine Falcons that are trained as falconry birds are sometimes flown by their trainers at airports to scare off ducks and other birds that could collide with a plane and cause accidents. These falcons are helping to keep our skies safe!"
(The Peregrine Fund.)
One of the fan favorites today, although not a raptor, was the Northern Flicker,
of which we viewed 267 today!!
Thank you again Steve for these fabulous shots!
We are having such an amazing season, and it's not even October yet!
It looks to be another gorgeous day on the Eastern Shore tomorrow,
so we are hoping for another exciting day before more rain comes to the coast.
Look forward to seeing more of you in the near future, and in the meantime,
keep your eyes on the sky!