Monday, October 19, 2015

Watatic "Weather Watch"

A little over 4 hours of hawkwatching on Mt Watatic brought just under 30 migrant raptors past the site. Leading the way was 16 Sharp-shins followed and a scattering of a single Cooper's, 2 Red-shoulders, 4 Red-tails, 3 Turkey Vultures and a few unidentified raptors. Raptors deemed not to migrating were a few Red-tails and 3 Bald Eagles.
Bald Eagles have become a little more "problematic"to determine if they are migrants or "locals". For example, today 2 immature s pasted the site apparently headed SW only to show up a bit later headed north, hence they were removed for the migrant list, but still a pleasure to observe.

Portions of the "powerline trial" had an impressive carpet of beech, birch and maple foliage, making for a near "red carpet" stroll to the watch site!

An attractive carpet of leaves blanketed the more level sections of the trail.
The day started with clear skies, however far to the west a cloud bank could be seen approaching. The temperature at home had dropped to about 20 F over night, and had only risen to ~30F just after 10AM, when I arrived on the east summit. That combined with a north west wind at 5-10 made for a little more than crisp fall day.
A near cloudless sky, Stodge Meadow Pond and Wachusett Mtn in this view to the south.

A low passing aircraft.

28 of a total of 90 south bound Canada Geese that passed.

1 of 2 Common Loons that passed on a south bound mission
The clouds rolled in just after noon and snow squalls could be seen approaching from the west.
Heavy cloud cover over Pack Monadock, they had a similar flight to Watatic(for this day), but they had a late day Golden Eagle!
Pack has had quite a season with over 18,500 migrant raptors for the autumn, including a Swainson's Hawk.

A snow Squall approaching Lower Naukeag Lake in Ashburnham

More snow passing and it looked like like "Pack" was getting some winter action.

A portion of this heavy squall eventually gave Watatic a wintery blast.

Another squall about to obscure the Boston Skyline.
Season totals for hawkwatch sites such as Mt. Watatic, Wachusett Mtn, Pack Monadnock....and most other watch sites can be found HERE.

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