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FALL 2017 PAID RAPTOR COUNTER NEEDED (September 1 - November 30) 

to continue raptor migration monitoring for the Detroit River Hawk Watch (http://www.drhawkwatch.org/). Annual raptor monitoring began in 1983 and documents one of the most significant fall raptor migrations in North America.


Our hawk watch site has spectacular annual flights of broad-winged hawks, golden eagles, and all eastern raptors, including reliable passages of Swainson's hawk. During the month of September we can expect upwards of 10,000 to 100,000 Broad-winged Hawks, alone! There have only been seven primary counters since 1998 and most return for multiple seasonsWe seek individuals who enjoy working with volunteer counters and communicating with visitors. Applicants must have some initial field biological experience and extremely high personal interest in raptor migration. Good writing skills are essential for daily and end-of-season summary reports. Counters will be expected to follow the official DRHW Protocol.


We are very willing to work with student schedules and contract on a part-time basis ensuring the entire season is covered. Contract will be through the International Wildlife Refuge Alliance, which is a non-profit (501c3) organization furthering the mission of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge. 


Please contact: STEVE DUSHANE, Refuge Manager, Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge,  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. E-mail:  Steve_Dushane@fws.gov (PH: 734-692-7604 or 734-341-8893),  9311 Groh Road, Grosse Ile, MI 48138.

2017 Fall Raptor Counter Needed (September 1 to November 30, 2017)

posted Jun 15, 2017, 4:25 PM by Web master   [ updated Jul 17, 2017, 6:23 PM ]

to continue raptor migration monitoring for the Detroit River Hawk Watch (http://www.drhawkwatch.org/). Annual raptor monitoring began in 1983 and documents one of the most significant fall raptor migrations in North America.


Our hawk watch site has spectacular annual flights of broad-winged hawks, golden eagles, and all eastern raptors, including reliable passages of Swainson's hawk. During the month of September we can expect upwards of 10,000 to 100,000 Broad-winged Hawks, alone! There have only been seven primary counters since 1998 and most return for multiple seasonsWe seek individuals who enjoy working with volunteer counters and communicating with visitors. Applicants must have some initial field biological experience and extremely high personal interest in raptor migration. Good writing skills are essential for daily and end-of-season summary reports. Counters will be expected to follow the official DRHW Protocol.


We are very willing to work with student schedules and contract on a part-time basis ensuring the entire season is covered. Contract will be through the International Wildlife Refuge Alliance, which is a non-profit (501c3) organization furthering the mission of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge. 


Please contact: STEVE DUSHANE, Refuge Manager, Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge,  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. E-mail:  Steve_Dushane@fws.gov (PH: 734-692-7604 or 734-341-8893),  9311 Groh Road, Grosse Ile, MI 48138.


Deadline for Application is August 1, 2017.

2016 Season Summary

posted Jun 15, 2017, 4:22 PM by Web master

The 2016 count was the 34th consecutive season of monitoring diurnal raptor and turkey vulture migration at the mouth of the Detroit River, and the 19th year of consistent coverage at Lake Erie Metropark. There were 635.5 hours of data collection with counts conducted on 89 days between 1 September and 30 November. A total of 65,398 raptors and turkey vultures of fifteen species were counted. We compared this season’s counts of individuals for each species to the respective long-term average (LTA) for each species since 1998. Only merlins (Falco columbarius) were counted within a 15 percent deviation from the LTA, which we considered to be the ‘approximately average’ zone. The total number of individuals counted for all other species that we observed this season was at least 15 percent less than the respective LTA, which we considered to be ‘below average’. The species that were counted in below average numbers were turkey vulture (Cathartes aura), bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalis), northern harrier (Circus cyaneus), sharp-shinned hawk 
(Accipiter striatus), red-shouldered hawk (Buteo lineatus), broad-winged hawk (Buteo platypterus), red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), American kestrel (Falco sparverius), peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), Cooper’s hawk (Accipiter cooperii), northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis), rough-legged hawk (Buteo lagopus), and osprey (Pandion haliaetus). Unlike the previous seven seasons, no Swainson’s hawks were counted this season. The full report can be accessed below:

Golden Eagles! - November 2016

posted Nov 13, 2016, 7:43 AM by Web master   [ updated Nov 13, 2016, 8:03 AM ]

Highlights of this month's count include some nice "low-flying" Golden Eagles. Mark Hainen and Andrew Sturgess have been on the ready w/ their cameras to capture a few of these late-season visitors as they passed unusually close to the count-sight.


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