Text and photos by Danny Erickson
Greetings from Capilla Peak! The fall raptor migration is sure starting to slow up here for the Manzano Mountains HawkWatch with fewer birds counted and trapped as we close in on the end of the season. It is well past peak migration, but we have record breaking numbers at observation and in the trapping blind! So far, it has been an above historic average season with more Red-tailed Hawks, Peregrine Falcons, Broad-winged Hawks, Ospreys, Turkey Vultures, and Zone-tailed Hawks counted on historic average. Recently we have been getting a surge of Golden Eagles passing through, and back-to-back Northern Harriers caught in the blind! A fittingly beautiful pumpkin-colored bird that tells us Halloween is soon approaching. The crew is also waiting for the fateful chance at some far north migrators, like the distinguished Rough-legged Hawk.
Aside from the occasional rain shower and winds at the observation station, we are high and dry and still very warm here in New Mexico! Once again, thanks to all those who help from our committed volunteers to all our visitors. Although the end of the season is fast approaching, there is still plenty time left to join us and engage in the birding fun!
P.S. Here’s a fun link about a hawk raised by eagles.
Until next time!
--Danny and the HawkWatch Manzano 2017 Crew