|Greetings from Barnes Corners NY: site of an episode of the X-Files and home of Derby Hill's Hawk Counter Emeritus Gerry Smith... a coincidence, I don't think so...
the opposite of a hawk watch | this count is one where the hawk watchers are on the move and hawks -- more or less -- aren't. These "winter counts" are now conducted around Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Groundhog Day in two locations with similar open, flat terrain and of approx. the same square miles . This Winter, a third location in Nova Scotia was covered on New Year's Day and Valentine's Day, upcoming.
One hundred and eighty-nine raptors for the two counts including birds seen outside the count areas. Amongst these were additional Redtails, Rouglegs, Harriers, and Kestrels plus 2 Bald Eagles on the Mohawk River along the NYS Thruway.
Champlain Valley VT [2/2/02]:
Count area -- Towns of Bridport and Addison, mostly.
Under the category: "Holy Cow" we had fifty plus Roughlegs in one day during the Winter of 01-02! And if that weren't enough, two-thirds were adults, with adult male light morph birds everywhere! On most counts, immature RLs dominate but not in Vermont on Groundhog Day... a day we'd like to repeat over and over and over.
Weather: A very sunny day in the mid-twenties following a snow and ice event on the heels of three days of a nice winter meltdown.
NH 1 [adult female]
Hawk Food: 2300+ Snow Buntings; 139 Horned Larks; 120+ Common Redpolls; 1 Eastern Bluebird; 1 Pileated Woodpecker.
Northern NY [2/4/02]:
Count area -- West of Watertown on Pt. Peninsula and nearby.
The CBC [Canadian Broadcasting Co.] forecast called for "heavy flurries" [hadn't heard that term before]. It was indeed overcast with blowing and drifting snow often accompanied with those snow flurries, making observation not as much fun as we'd like. But we prevailed. While we didn't have any Kestrels on winds easily running twenty mph out of the northeast, Gerry observed we probably passed a few who were sitting indoors... on inclement days like this one, Kestrels might be flushed out of one or more of the abandoned farm houses on Pt. Peninsula where they've gone to get out of the fiercest of weather. A fairly paneless process.
BE 2 [Basic I and an adult]
Hawk Food: 5 Tundra Swans; 172 Snow Buntings; 99 Horned Larks [plus single birds on territory]; 72 Common Redpolls.
Unindicted Coconspirators: Tom Tyning [VT]; Gerry Smith [NY]