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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Broadwings

Broad-winged Hawk, note the dark trailing edge of wings

Broad-winged Hawk, side view, on a glide, makes tail look longer

Broad-winged Hawk, going by, top view

Up on Pack Monadnock yesterday, we had 315 total raptors, 257 of them were Broad-winged Hawks. No big "kettles" of Broadwings, as there did not seem to be many good thermals (which they use to migrate). But lots of fun folks were there, and we all had nice looks at a variety of hawks. We had fun teaching some of the beginner's who were up there, to look at the quantitative shape of hawks ( such as length of tail compared to width of wings) as a good ID tool.

Some of my photos above show Broadwings from different angles. You don't always get close views from the underneath side of hawks, so it's important to learn to identify them from any angle. Keep watching and holding your binoculars on them as long as they are in view, even when they go by, and you'll learn a lot.

Windy conditions prevail today, with more northerly winds than yesterday, but warm, just like yesterday. So we'll see what the hawks think about migration conditions. Cold fronts are coming in, so good hawk watching conditions may occur, even into the weekend.

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