Current Activity

More diversity seen over the Mountain under sunny skies.

Greetings all,

Wow, three sunny days in a row and warmer temps…can spring be really here. Still looking for that south wind day on the mountain but at least now there is a steady flow of migrants. Bald Eagles are coming through in good numbers with 178 cumulative for the last four days along with 16 Golden Eagles. New to the count for the year seen yesterday were Sharp-shinned Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk and Merlin.


The first surprise of the day yesterday was when I climbed the last hill on the snowmobile to reach West Bluff first thing in the morning. A bulky white bird flew over the trail and to my right and out of view. By the time I stopped and removed my helmut, it was nowhere to be seen but the bird was quite obviously a Snowy Owl. It did not reappear during the day but maybe it is still around somewhere. Other new non-raptors for the spring were Killdeer (2) and Canada Goose, the latter a group of nine that was harassed for several minutes by a marauding Golden Eagle!



Improving counts with improving weather.

Hi everyone,

Hopefully yesterday’s movement of birds is a sign of things to come here at Brockway. The 29 Bald Eagles seen yesterday just about doubled the season’s total with the overall tally up to 59 now along with 6 Golden Eagles total and singles each of Northern Goshawk and Rough-legged Hawk. Now all we need is a good south wind day to really get migration going in earnest.

There hasn’t been much other avian activity up on the mountain other then the expected residents. I did see a single Bohemian Waxwing yesterday and Joe Youngman had a Snow Bunting land right next to the counter’s shack when he filled in for me on Monday past.


Slow start to count continues

Hi all,

Wow, what a difference a year makes! Those of you familiar with the count will remember how early last year’s spring was and how at this time, there were large numbers of Bald Eagles migrating up the Keweenaw. Not so this year. There has been no more than a handful of Bald’s seen along with a couple of Golden Eagles and a single Northern Goshawk. Hopefully our weather and migration along with it will improve over the coming days.

Look forward to seeing some of you regulars on the mountain!


2013 Spring Counter

We are pleased to announce that we have hired a hawk counter for the 2013 spring migration study. Calvin Brennan will be joining us in this survey, bringing along a great amount of experience and knowledge of natural history, with particular expertise in the fields of bird and plant biology.

Calvin has a considerable amount of experience counting diurnal raptors at various sites in the Eastern US including the Detroit River Hawk Watch 2002-08, Whitefish Point 2004-05, 2007-08 as well as Kiptopeke (Virginia) 2000-01 and 2009.

He has extensive experience in the methods involved in capturing and handling passerines for scientific research including mist-netting, banding and measuring of birds. For the last 3 fall seasons, Calvin served as bander-in-charge at the Kiptopeke Songbird Station, Coastal Virginia Wildlife Observatory.

Calvin spends much of his free time with bird-related pursuits and regularly submits sightings to eBird.

Welcome Calvin ~ we look forward to working with you.

The New Hawk Watch for 2013-2015 and Beyond!

This is where the official counter will be posting daily data and information from the top of Brockway Mountain.

The start date of the count is March 15, 2013 and will be 3 months long ending June 15, 2013. We are planning 3 year counts and hope that they will continue over several years in order to acquire significant migratory data. The count is possible through donations and sponsorships.