Monday, October 16, 2017

7th Weekend of Banding 2017


Hello Friends,

Our seventh weekend of banding turned out to be one of our worst ones for hawks in many years. We ended up getting two "Skunked Days" in a row with no birds banded and no bounce outs.

Trudi and I drove up on Friday afternoon to get things tidied up before the Minnesota Falconers Association members arrived for the MFA October meeting that was scheduled for Saturday afternoon at Hawk Harbor. Greg Mikkelson had been up on his trapping site that day and came back to Hawk Harbor to camp for the night with Chris Aleman and her grandson Conner. We all loaded into our van and went in to Two Harbors for supper at the Do North Pizzeria. Todd was at Hawk Harbor when we returned and had a nice campfire going.

Saturday morning Trudi and I met Chuck at Hawk Harbor and went up to the blind to get things set up. Nancy and Rick came up a little later and we were ready to go at 8:45. Rick brought along his daughter Katie who hasn't been up for many years. Around 9:15, Butch Ukura brought his group, the Bee-Nay-She Bird Club, the oldest bird club in Minnesota, up to the blind. The sky was overcast and the wind was mostly out of the North-Northeast. We saw a few shins moving over early on, but none of them looked interested at all. We also saw some Northern harriers, some Bald eagles, a few vultures and a couple red-tails but not one came our way. At noon the bird club left to go birding in Duluth and a few of the MFA members started coming up to the blind. Nothing else came in for the rest of the day, so we closed down at 4:00 in time for the meeting at 4:30.

Twenty-four people showed up for the meeting and cook out, a really good turn out considering the travel distance and threatening bad weather. Trudi did a great job of planning and food prep. Mattie and Joe supplied the drinks, and Conner, with assist from Chris and Greg, did the grilling. Several others brought much appreciated food donations for the cookout. Dave Scarbrough had a non-resident goshawk permit and drove all the way up from Missouri to trap and attend our meeting. The rain held off until the meeting and cookout were over, everyone had their tents and sleeping accommodations sorted out, and we were all enjoying the campfire.

We got a total of 0 birds and 0 bounce-outs on Saturday.
A "Skunked Day".

On Sunday morning, several of the Minnesota Falconers Association group went up to the blind and we had everything set up and ready to go by 8:15. The sky was partly cloudy and the wind was predicted to be strong out of the Northwest. However, the wind never did strengthen, but a fair number of birds did start to migrate. Try, as we might, none of them wanted to come even close to our place. After 10:00 most of the migrating birds were high up in the clouds and out of our reach, so we closed down at noon. Even though we had some rain and no birds all weekend, we all enjoyed the beautiful fall colors and good company!

We got a total of 0 birds and 0 bounce outs on Sunday.
Our second "Skunked Day" in a row.

Total for the weekend was 0 birds and 0 bounce-outs.
A total "Skunked Weekend"

Remember also, to go to You Tube and search Frank Taylor Films or click on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4sdI11-TvxPaQ5nO3PsKKA and then scroll to View All.


Please help hawks by supporting:
Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory (www.hawkridge.org)
The Raptor Center (www.raptor.cvm.umn.edu)
The National Eagle Center (www.nationaleaglecenter.org)

Keep your eyes on the skies.

Frank & Trudi Taylor

01. Katie and Rick at Hawk Harbor.
Seventh Weekend 2017

02. The Bee-Nay-She Bird Club doing the "Wish Bird" sign.
Seventh Weekend 2017

03. Minnesota Falconers Association members doing the "Wish Bird" sign.
Seventh Weekend 2017

04. We had a good turn out for the Minnesota Falconers Association's October meeting, 
cookout and camp over at Hawk Harbor.
Seventh Weekend 2017

05. Lining up to eat at Hawk Harbor.
Seventh Weekend 2017

06. Trudi, Chris and Carolyn setting up the food tables.
Seventh Weekend 2017

07. Connor, Chris and Greg cooking the Johnsonville Polish sausages.
Seventh Weekend 2017

08. Our president Mattie conducting the meeting.
Seventh Weekend 2017

09. MFA members enjoying the company, food and campfire.
Seventh Weekend 2017

10. Paul and son Theo munching on the Polish sausages.
Seventh Weekend 2017

11. Ben and Dave enjoying the food.
Seventh Weekend 2017

12. Mattie and his Peregrine falcon.
Seventh Weekend 2017

13. Josh and his Sharp-shinned hawk.
Seventh Weekend 2017

14. Joe brought along his Red-tailed hawk.
Seventh Weekend 2017

15. A packed blind on Sunday, but alas, no hawks.
Seventh Weekend 2017
 

Monday, October 9, 2017

6th Weekend of Banding 2017


Hello Friends,

Our sixth weekend of banding featured 2 Peregrine falcons, one adult and one immy.

Saturday morning October 7th, Trudi and I took our time driving up to Hawk Harbor. Rick had come up the night before and Nancy and Chuck stayed home this weekend, visiting with their son David's family from Canada. Todd was not feeling well and also stayed home. When we arrived at Hawk Harbor, Mattie Lasch and his dad Glen were there, staying in Mike's trailer. Mattie has a Peregrine permit he was trying to fill. They had been up on Friday trying to catch one at Mattie's spot down by the lake. We put our stuff in the back of Rick's truck and went up to the blind. It was an overcast morning and there was no wind. It was a late start, but we had everything set up and ready to begin at 9:30.

A few minutes later, Nancy Wilson and her son Eric came up. Nancy was a volunteer when I was working at The Raptor Center twenty years ago and she has been coming up every year ever since. We caught our first bird of the weekend at 10:08. It was a young Sharp-shinned hawk out hunting the draw. The next bird in was an adult shin at 10:25. We banded them, took photos and had Nancy and Eric do a double release. Around 10:30, our White Bear Lake neighbor, Vincent Kancans, stopped in to see us. Vincent works as a writing translator and is fluent in multiple languages. This was his first time at the blind.

We all settled back in the blind to look for more birds.  A few shins, harriers, some eagles, vultures and a red-tail or two were moving but things were pretty slow. Rick was pulling for a shin that we were all watching toward the North, when we heard a loud swoosh from the South. It was an adult female Peregrine falcon that had stooped in without anyone seeing it approach! We measured it and because it looked like an unbanded local bird, we called Jackie Fallon of The Midwest Peregrine Society to see if she wanted to color band it. Jackie couldn't get there right away so she called Dave Evans, who had banded for many years at Hawk Ridge and now does a lot of the banding for the Midwest Peregrine Society. While Dave was banding the Peregrine, we got a call from our long-time friend Ron Clarke who said he was visiting friends in Superior, Wisconsin, and was on his way up to see us. Ron is a falconer from Alaska who grew up in Minnesota. He has also served for many years as a director for the North American Falconer's Association.

Dave and I finished banding the Peregrine and I thanked him for rushing out to add this important data to the society's program. Dave had to get back to town right away and missed seeing Ron who pulled up just after he left. We showed the Peregrine to Ron, took some more photos and had Vincent release it. Later on, we had a couple Merlins come in and stoop the fake owl but we didn't catch either one. Nothing else came in that day, so we closed down at 5:00. Nancy and Eric headed for the cities and the rest of us met Mattie and Glen at the Do North Pizzaria for supper in Two Harbors, Minnesota. We went back to Hawk Harbor for a campfire and afterward Glen headed home and Ron went back to Wisconsin.

We got a total of 3 birds and 0 bounce-outs on Saturday.
2 Sharp-shinned hawks and 1 Peregrine falcon.

On Sunday morning, Mattie got up before the rest of us and went out to his spot along the lake. Trudi, Rick, Vincent and I got up later and headed up to our blind. We were set up and ready by 7:45. At 7:50 a young Northern harrier, one of three that were out buzzing the owl, made a run at the net but barely touched the top of it and bounced out. Close, but no cigar! A few minutes later at 8:08, an adult male Sharp-shinned hawk was out hunting the draw, saw us and came right in. We banded it, took photos and Vincent let it go, just before he left to go hiking along the lake.

Around 9:00 our friend Eric Schraeder, a Minnesota falconer who has recently been serving over seas in the Air Force, came up. We caught two more shins while he was there and he got to do both releases. It was a very small way to thank him for his great service. We caught another shin and showed Eric how we do a hypnotism, but when we woke it up, it shot right back into the front net. (That does not count as a recapture.)

Just as Eric was about to leave, we got a call from Mattie saying that he had just caught a young female Peregrine falcon! Congratulations, Mattie!!!! Eric went down to meet Mattie at Hawk Harbor to jess up the falcon.

At 10:34 we caught another shin, an adult male. We banded it, took some photos and Trudi let it go. Not many hawks were flying that morning, but at 11:35 we spotted a young female Peregrine falcon starting to rise in a thermal on the other end of the field. Rick pulled the lure and it locked on! We watched as it did a long gliding stoop over the field and into the front net. WOW!!! I even had enough time to grab my camera and get a slow motion shot of it hitting the net. We took a lot of photos, banded it and Trudi and Rick did the release.

We closed down at noon and went down to see Mattie's new Peregrine at Hawk Harbor. When we got there, Eric had already left but our other friends Matt Solenski, a Merlin researcher, and falconer Jeff Stedman were there.

We got a total of 5 birds and 1 bounce out on Sunday.
4 Sharp-shinned hawks and 1 Peregrine falcon.

Total for the weekend was 8 birds and 1 bounce-out.
6 Sharp-shinned hawks and 2 Peregrine falcons.

Remember also, to go to You Tube and search Frank Taylor Films or click on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4sdI11-TvxPaQ5nO3PsKKA and then scroll to View All.


Please help hawks by supporting:
Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory (www.hawkridge.org)
The Raptor Center (www.raptor.cvm.umn.edu)
The National Eagle Center (www.nationaleaglecenter.org)
  
Keep your eyes on the skies. 

Frank & Trudi Taylor


01. Adult female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

02. Young female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

03. Rick and Trudi setting up the nets.
Sixth Weekend 2017

04. First bird of the weekend, a young Sharp-shinned hawk.
Sixth Weekend 2017

05. Second bird of the weekend, an adult Sharp-shinned hawk.
Sixth Weekend 2017

06. Frank banding the Sharp-shinned hawk.
Sixth Weekend 2017

07. Frank, Rick, Eric, Trudi and Nancy with the shins.
Sixth Weekend 2017

08. Eric and Nancy about to release the shins.
Sixth Weekend 2017

09. Eric and Nancy doing a double shin release.
Sixth Weekend 2017

10. An adult female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

11. Rick taking the adult Peregrine out of the net.
Sixth Weekend 2017

12. An adult female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

13. Frank measuring the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

14. Frank and Trudi with the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

15. An adult female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

16. Frank holding the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

17. Dave getting ready to color band the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

18. Frank and Dave color banding the Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

19. Color bands on the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

20. Frank thanking Dave for coming out to color band the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

21. An adult female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

22. Frank, Ron and Trudi with the color banded Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

23. Ron, Vincent, Rick, Trudi, Frank, Nancy and Eric with the Peregrine.
Sixth Weekend 2017

24. Vincent about to release the Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

25. Vincent releasing the Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

26. Rick, Vincent, Ron, Glen, Mattie, Trudi and Frank having pizza for supper.
Sixth Weekend 2017

27. A Sunday morning shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

28. Frank, Trudi, Rick and Vincent with the Sharp-shinned hawk.
Sixth Weekend 2017

29. Vincent about to release the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

30. Vincent releasing the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

31. A young female Sharp-shinned hawk.
Sixth Weekend 2017

32. Rick and Eric with the young shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

33. Eric releasing the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

34. An adult shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

35. Eric about to release the adult shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

36. Eric releasing the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

37. Another adult shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

38. Trudi about to release the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

39. Trudi releasing the shin.
Sixth Weekend 2017

40. A young female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

41. A big young female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

42. Rick taking the young Peregrine out of the net.
Sixth Weekend 2017

43. The young female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

44. Frank banding the young Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

45. A young Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

46. Frank bringing the Peregrine out for release.
Sixth Weekend 2017

47. Trudi and Rick releasing the young female Peregrine falcon.
Sixth Weekend 2017

48. Mattie with the young Peregrine he caught at his trapping site.
Sixth Weekend 2017

49. Mattie's Peregrine hooded and sitting on the block.
Sixth Weekend 2017

50. Rick, Trudi, Frank, Mattie, Matt and Jeff with Mattie's Peregrine at Hawk Harbor.
Sixth Weekend 2017