Friday, March 6, 2015

Results February 28-March 6th-Exciting Migration Tuesday March 3rd-399 Swainson's Hawks

Saturday February 28-Hal
Sunday March 1-Herb/Judy
Monday March 2-Herb/Judy
Tuesday March 3-Steve
Wednesday March 4-Laura
Thursday March 5-Hal
Friday March 6-Rose

Saturday Feb. 28-0
Sunday March 1-0
Monday March 2-5 Swainson's; 7 Turkey Vultures; 1 Red-tailed Hawk
Tuesday March 3-399 Swainson's Hawks; 27 Turkey Vultures; 1 Red-tailed Hawk
Wednesday March 4-44 Swainson's Hawks; 17 Turkey Vultures
Thursday March 5-0
Friday March 6-0

Borrego Springs had a two day rain event-Sunday and Monday. Monday evening we expected some hawks (counted around 250) but were surprised with over 300 on Tuesday. The total of 399 included several close kettles with lots of fine viewing. The photo's below will give you an idea of the excitement. Of course we hope for a few more repeat days with plenty of hawks. Check out the Youtubes below. On Thursday we watched as several Swainson's Hawks descended into a field near the hawk watch. On Friday we counted more than 50 in flower fields. Evidently the same birds are spending time feeding on caterpillars. This evening (Friday) we counted 67 Swainson's in a field next to the date farm on Borrego Valley Rd. This is just south of the solar field. Apparently hawks are remaining in town as long as there is food available.
Typical Behavior of Swainson's sitting in an open field. This photo was taken last year. Today the same field has a number of hawks feeding on caterpillars. 
Evening Watch:
We enjoyed watching the SW's feeding in the field across from the evening site. Our high count was 67  hawks. No new birds apparently came in.

Wind should be calm in the morning so any flight from the date farm will take place after 8:30A. Best viewing will be from Borrego Valley Rd (night site-1.8 miles north of Palm Canyon Drive). If the hawks migrate they will cross DiGiorgio Rd near Big Horn (about 2 miles north of Palm Canyon Drive). The hawks will stream out of the date farm and kettle up to the west.

If you would like to be placed on the ALERT list-contact Hal at I only send out an ALERT when we have over 100 Swainson's Hawks descending into the valley in the evening. You can access data from 2003 to present at

Thanks to Iris Kilpatrick who continues to come out to photograph the hawks on short notice. Also, thanks to Charity Hagen and Laura Webb for sharing photos.

Attached are several photo's and a two Youtubes-enjoy. All shot March-3-5, 2015

Hawkwatch Youtube: s and

Yes, we still have wildflowers and caterpillars-Laura Webb
Henderson Rd March 5, 2015-HC

Caterpillars finishing off Sand Verbena-Iris Kilpatrick
Little Swainson's dots with snow in the background-HC
TV's and SW's together-March 4, 2015-HC
How Many Swainson's in Eucalyptus Roadrunner March 3, 2015-HC
Handsome SW Intermediate-HC
Great Closeup-SW-Charity Hagen
SW-Iris Kilpatrick
Best shot of a light morph SW-Iris Kilpatrick
Rufous Morph-Iris Kilpatrick
Red-tailed Hawk "Fuertes"-HC
Sunset March 3, 2015-HC


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