Current Activity

10,000 and the end of the Season

June dragged to a finish and added just over 900 new birds to the season total. This is the first time less then 1,500 birds have been recorded in June since 2010, for prospective 2013 had over 7,000 birds!

While low, the 900 were enough to push the season total over 10,000. While this is the third lowest total in the history of the count, breaking 10,000 is always good for the counter’s sanity. For a more thorough breakdown of this spring checkout the (soon to be finished ) report that will posted sometime in the next few weeks.

The last day of the season featured a mid afternoon thunderstorm that led to some interesting fog and cloud formations and some brief but heavy rain.

At the start of the month the Raven young spent the first hour of the count loafing and catching bugs in front of the shack, giving some of the most intimate views I’ve ever had. They’ve since expanded their flying skills and their range and now are seen anywhere in a couple mile radius of the west overlook.

In the miscellaneous category we have this Barred Owl that flushed off the road one rainy morning, and an adult Black-bellied Plover that spent a couple days in Cat Habor. A few late migrants in town included a male Northern Cardinal, Northern Mockingbird, and House Wren.

That’s a wrap folks, enjoy the summer!

 

 

 

Leaf Out

Spring has been advancing across the Keweenaw and at long last the forests are starting to glow green.

Migration has been spotty with daily totals between 4 (5/23) and 360 (5/26), the 27th however offered a refreshing change with over 1,000 birds for the day (for just the third time this season).

With that thousand birds the season’s total is now over 9,200, which means it avoids setting a new record low season total for the count and with almost three weeks left in the season there’s still a chance to climb up the rankings.

Broad-winged Hawks continue to dominant the daily totals with juvenile numbers starting to build. The adults moving through now are showing the wear of migration with many having missing wing or tail feathers.

Warbler migration has been picking up with 20+ species recorded locally in the last week or so. Other migrants recently include Upland Sandpiper, Red-headed Woodpecker, Northern Mockingbird, and Western Meadowlark.

Entertainment this week was provided by the local Common Raven pair fledging two young. So far they’re still figuring out the whole “flying thing” and spend the majority of the day awkwardly perched, begging food from the parents.

Benefit Cocktail Party

Where: Harbor Haus Restaurant ~ Copper Harbor

When: Wednesday, May 31st from 6 pm to 8 pm

~Benefit to support the Brockway Mountain Hawk Watch!

Set off the season with a Cocktail Party at the Harbor Haus Restaurant! Sample delicious appetizers and enjoy Harbor Haus hospitality. Learn about Copper Harbor Birding and the BMHW.
There will be a Silent Auction and a 50/50 Raffle. Come for the fun and help protect your environment too!
Cost is $20 at the door with a cash bar,

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Mid May

Saturday is Birdfest! Checkout; http://www.copperharborbirding.org/bird-fest/ to see the full slate of activities (pro tip, there’s an all you can eat pancake breakfast for $8.50!)

The north winds finally broke last week giving the first two day stretch of south winds in seemingly forever, along with the south winds came the biggest flight of the season on the 10th!

All told 1,870 raptors flew east past Brockway that day, with a peak hour of 642! Highlights included 1364 Broad-winged, 236 Sharp-shinned, 134 Red-tailed, 59 Turkey Vultures, 34 Bald Eagles, 11 Rough-legged Hawks (likely the last push of the spring), 1 Northern Goshawk, and 1 Swainson’s Hawk (adult intermediate type).

Since then things have slowed with the last six days only having totals in the double to low triple digit totals.

    

Off the mountain migration has been slowly picking up with warblers along with other expected spring migrants finally starting to increase. Notables since the last post include Cape May Warbler, Le Conte’s Sparrow, Lark Sparrow, Clay-colored Sparrow, Brewer’s Blackbird, Evening Grosbeak, Western & Eastern Meadowlark, and a House Sparrow (so far the best bird of the spring, and one of only a handful of records for Keweenaw Co. in the last decade)!

May at Last (is it spring yet?)

The weather of late has been less than ideal. North winds have dominated eight out of the last nine days along with snow, sleet, rain, and fog. Below are some photos from the last batch of rain/snow to hit the mountain.

May 3rd featured the only south winds and flight of the period with 822 raptors for the day, including 535 Broad-winged Hawks, 100 Red-tailed Hawks, 82 Sharp-shinned Hawks, 2 Northern Goshawks, and 4 Golden Eagles. No other day during this period broke 100 birds. Usually the first south wind in May brings some of the largest flights of the season but the persistent northerly winds have kept things quiet this season.

Other birds around in the last week or so include Am. White Pelican, Trumpeter Swan, Greater Yellowlegs, Palm Warbler, Lincoln’s, Chipping, and Le Conte’s Sparrow.

Pancake Breakfast to Benefit BMHW

Not Your Mother’s Pancake Breakfast ~ Hosted by Copper Harbor Birding
When: Saturday, May 20th from 8:30 am to  11:00 am
Where: The Mariner North in Copper Harbor

AUCE Pancake Buffet ~ Enjoy fluffy pancakes with a delightful array of toppings including fresh fruit and berries, fruit sauces and syrups, various toppings and Peg’s famous Frangelico Cream! Served with bacon and sausages as well as coffee or milk.

Cost is $8.50 per person. Proceeds benefit the Brockway Mountain Hawk Watch!
Eat pancakes and help protect the environment ~ How can you go wrong?

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