Thursday, March 28, 2013

Another slow day-No Migrants-3/28/13

Joe Hopkins
Assisted by:
Hal Cohen

Migration Today:
Swainson's Hawks-0

No migrants today. Partly cloudy with temps rising to mid 80's. Wind was very light WNW. This is the first March 28th in 11 years without a migrant. One encouraging find however were several Grey Bird Grasshoppers. This may lead to some ground feeding Swainson's activity. We can only speculate as to the whereabouts of the Swainson's. Each evening we wait for a tornado of hawks to descend into the valley. Several questions have been asked lately about the migration of Swainson's Hawks.

Where do the Swainson's Hawk spend the winter? Where do Swainson's Hawks breed? Below are two maps that help answer these questions. The first map shows the location of 30 hawks that were outfitted with satellite tracking devices. Each blip below is color coded for particular hawks. The data is from USGS, Snake River Station. The second map shows the breeding range of the Swainson's Hawks. 

Evening Watch:
53 Swainson's dropped into the Date Farm this evening. 

The wind hopefully will be light tomorrow morning. At least 53 Swainson's will kettle up from the Date Farm.

Where and When:
With a calm wind the SW's will most likely kettle up around 8-8:30A. If it is windy early, they will take off by 7-8A. Best place to view the hawks is from the evening site on Borrego Valley Rd and also from Di Giorgio Road about 1 mile north of Palm Canyon Drive. 
Map of  Swainson's Hawk Data

Breeding grounds of Swainson's in pink. 

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