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Broad-winged hawk searches, Orchard, Rose breast

11:19 am

Given that today was nice and sunny following multiple days of more inclement weather, and the wind flow was from the Northeast early on, seemed like a good day to try for Broad-wing hawk and other migrating raptors after other AM birding, so I set up shop along Catalina Boulevard at the cemetery on Point Loma. Started slow but then the first red tail got up just before 10:00 a.m. The most active period Was between 10:00 and 10:40, when the thermals got going well, but before the Westerly seabreeze kicked in around 10:45. During that time period, there were multiple accipiters of both species and one or two red shouldered hawks going down the point, two or three red tails that are probably local residents, and one young Broad-winged that stayed to the north at moderate height and was coming south but then got harassed by a raven and turned around and went back north and disappeared. And right after the seabreeze picked up, the activity really dropped off. So it’s a fine line between late enough in the morning that there are some thermals but not so late that a potential moderate sea breeze could ruin it. Each day will be subtly different.

Of course, there are other potential spots to try for raptors such as Mount Soledad and Mount Helix, although Point Loma certainly has the history. And if at Point Loma, some people look from along the road adjacent to the committal shelter and some people go all the way down to cabrillo monument. Wherever one can get a very good view of the sky looking north, both low and high.

Despite the change in the weather, there weren’t many landbird migrants this morning, Although the long staying Orchard Oriole continues.
Yesterday, there was a female Rose breasted grosbeak and a continuing female Vermilion flycatcher at Holy Cross Cemetery.
Paul Lehman, San Diego