2013 was indeed a year to remember: We had the highest total yearly count in the history of the Hawkwatch; the highest single day count of hawks; the highest hourly total; and, the highest total number of Bald Eagles for a year.
The highest total number of hawks for a year prior to this year was 15,398 in 2010. This year the total was 21,221 more than 37% above that total.
The highest single day count prior to this year was 7344 (7313 BW) in 2010. This year was 8449 (8430 BW) on September 18. Rockfish had their fourth highest count on September 17 with 8244 (8202 BW).
The Bald Eagle recovery continued to a new high of 121 this year – the previous high was 104 in 2011.
Baron Gibson's exuberance on 9/18/13 was as straightforward and energetic as he is:
“PHENOMENAL, WOW, once in a lifetime maybe, is how I would describe today's daily record setting count at the watch. With the late flight last night, Tina & myself decided to get to the watch an hour early in hopes of seeing lift off & lift off we saw. Dave Brunstetter was there when we arrived & had already counted 27 BW's. Hawks were observed low in the valley on the west side getting up and streaming out. After an hour of counting (721 counted) the skies cleared just enough for us to see a huge flight come right over the watch sometimes 10-15 wide streaming & kettling, Kettling & streaming with 5,527 BW's counted.
BW's by hr (7:45-8) 27 (8-9) 721 (9-10) 5,527 (10-11) 268 (11-12) 996 (12-1) 583 (1-2) 62 (2-3) 237 (3-4) 2 (4-5) 7
2 Bald Eagles, Imm @ 12:38, AEBE @ 15:48
Special thanks to Dave Brunstetter for helping me count the multitudes.”
The regular Counters this year were: Joyce Holt, Bill and Katie James, Baron Gibson, Dillard Childress, David Kirk, and Carl Christianson. Somewhat irregular, but very important, counters were David Brunstetter, Matt Hosmer, Allen and Robin Austin, Barry Kinzie, Mike Crowder and Liz Williams.
Regular Observers this year included, but were not limited to: Darryl Martin, Andy Biggs, Eunice Hudgins, Phillip Ferguson, Tina Gibson, Kathy Brett, Jen, Randy Doss, Teresa Kinzie, Al Miller, and Norris Ford. We continue to appreciate assistance from Hollins University and Virginia Western during Broadwing season as well as many other Broadwing week regulars.
On 9/15/13, we had the earliest Golden Eagle on record, an immature.
Eye-balling the current (9 year) record, it looks like many species were below average this year including: Ospreys, Harriers, Sharpies, Kestrels, Merlins and Red Shoulders. Does anyone wonder if the melting permafrost enhances the food supply differentially to the Broadwings?
Is this a graph of BW migration? Click and see:
Nice Redtail-Squirrel Video From Richard E
Let's try wind farming for 30 years and see if there any Eagles left. NOT!
What those Amazon DRONES will be in for (check out the Osprey!)
You don't want to be a young OSPREY!
Harvey's Knob Current
If the National Park Service, Blue Ridge Parkway, Dept. of the Interior, etc., would let us, we could block off the Overlook and install a pond just for these migrating BIRDS!
Thanksgiving Turkeys HERE!
David B. and the SE OWL
Joyce's Unusual DAY!
Photos of Harvey HERE!
Darryl's World Part ONE (Page Down)
Sausage Gravy DAY!
Immature Golden Eagle at the Knob September 15th, 2013!
Pictures HERE! (Then Page Down)
Also including Carl's Big Day, Mature and Immature Broadwings, a local Redtail, and more!
What scientific measure is used to determine the end of Broadwing
Late 9/16/13 flight - See CATMAN (or Baron on the throne) HERE!
(Then Page Down)
9/17/13 - A Cloudy Day Here!
The Biggest Day EVER!
(Then Page Down)
These high numbers are likely a Result of a new incantation by the small group of Dave and Bill
Jim Hylton's daughter and granddaughter were special visitors to the Knob on this big day.
See if you believe this Osprey's migration with two days and
nights of non-stop FLIGHT!
On to Cuba and then to Venezuela!! Look HERE!
The Osprey has settled in HERE
Some Osprey Behavior
A Flying SONG
Late on November 5th, Katie and I had 99 birds - waiting for one more when these two birds appeared flapping across the sky:
Enlarge (X2) and note the top bird's legs.
And then they were gone:
September 19, 2012 was the third highest total at Harvey's
since records were begun - 5245!
Hard work for Baron who did an
incredible job! Some saw a BE chasing a PG - a first for many
People kettling up that day:
Barry cordially invites you to a Sausage Gravy Breakfast on
Sunday September 22rd, 2013 at 9-10AM on Harvey's Knob.
Last Year's RESULTS:
The chef prepares:
The Birds arrive:
The Chef's reward:
And we all miss JOHN......
Dillard sharing his knowledge with a through hiker:
(or trying to sell his Jeep.....)
New Revision of a Standard Hawk Book!
A review is HERE!
The Grand Old Hawkwatch of the South is HERE!
Marriage under the.......BROADWINGS?
Baron Retires to the Mountain!
Read this very nice ARTICLE about his retirement!
And this ONE!
We will miss Virginia Shields this year, a frequent visitor to, and friend of, Harvey's Knob Hawkwatch and birding in the Roanoke Valley.