Monthly Archives: June 2019

Banding Am. Kestrel nestlings

Nesting season is well underway and the Am. Kestrels are, in a few cases, still sitting on eggs; while most are busy feeding young. Some nest boxes that were active in 2018 are empty, some that were empty in 2018 now have nests. Sadly a few reports have come in that, the Am. Kestrels appeared at the nest boxes this spring, but for unknown reasons left the area.

Some Little Traverse Conservancy nest boxes are again occupied with 3 nests totaling 14 nestlings banded so far.

Jim and Kathy Bricker have 2 nest boxes out in Cheboygan County which are occupied, one with 4 eggs and the other with 4 young which were banded on June 19.

For the third season, I am again working with Arnie Pokorzynski. Arnie is checking nest boxes he has placed in the Alpena County area over a number of years. Arnie thinks he has about 40 nest boxes scattered around the county. On June 20, I met Arnie and we returned to 7 nest boxes Arnie had found with young and banded 30 nestlings.

That makes a total of 48 nestlings and one adult female banded so far. Hopefully this next week we will be banding more nestlings.

1 unhatched egg and 4- 4 day old nestlings
Arnie getting nestlings from box


3 – 15 day old Am. Kestrel nestlings

Late Raptor migration

Although the official Raptor count ended June 5; with the poor migration conditions for the last several days of the count I decided to conduct some further counts. On June 6 the weather cooperated for a good late migration and 599 raptors were counted. Mostly Broad-winged Hawks with a few Turkey Vultures and Red-tails. Bald Eagles were also moving north, mostly immatures and a few that appeared to be adults with a total of 78 counted.

On June 7 there were more raptors moving north with 225 counted. June 8 I could not get there till early afternoon and counted 45 in one hour, however they were not crossing the Straits. After 2 more days of bad weather I counted again on June11 ending the day with 121 raptors. These counts are posted on Hawk Count along with the full season count.

These later additions to the count give a total of 65,561 Raptors counted for the spring of 2019.

We are making plans for the fall count at Point LaBarbe from August 20 till Nov. 10, 2019. Hope to see you at the fall count. Ed Pike

June 5 Last day

64571 hawks were counted this year most so far. Best year for Rough-legged Hawks with 328, Kestrels about double with 81 Red-tailed Hawks with 22363 andNorthern Harriers with 134! Also four Swainson’s Hawks were seen.
Thanks To Ed Pike and Steve Baker for all your help made it alot easlier. A special thanks to Jo Cooley for the awesome apartment! Great season thanks to everybody who help out!