Four great hawk watches

8/30/2013 | 0

A Red-tailed Hawk lifts off from a rocky perch in the Marin Headlands in view of the Golden Gate Bridge. The hawk nests in the area and was banded a few years ago by banders at the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. Photo by George Eade/Golden Gate Raptor Observatory

A Red-tailed Hawk lifts off from a rocky perch in the Marin Headlands in view of the Golden Gate Bridge. The hawk nests in the area and was banded a few years ago by banders at the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. Photo by George Eade/Golden Gate Raptor Observatory

Hawk-watching season is here! Here’s an introduction to four of the best locations in North America for watching migrating eagles, falcons, hawks, kites, and other birds of prey:

Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in eastern Pennsylvania: Thousands of passing hawks are recorded here each fall. It’s the place raptor conservation was born. Keep track of daily hawk count at Hawk Mountain.

Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory in Duluth, Minnesota: More Northern Goshawks are tallied here than anywhere else. Keep track of daily hawk count at Hawk Ridge.

Bridger Mountains Hawk Watch near Bozeman, Montana: You won’t find a spot in the lower 48 states with more Golden Eagles. Read about the Bridger Mountains Raptor Migration Project.

Make plans for the Bridger Raptor Festival, October 4-6.

And Hawk Hill, in the Marin Headlands north of San Francisco, site of the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. More migrating raptors are recorded here than any other place in the Pacific states. The Red-tailed Hawk shown above is one of them. It nests in the Marin Headlands and was banded a few years ago by researchers at the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. Keep track of daily hawk count at Hawk Hill.

Please leave a comment if you’ve already visited one of these great hawk watches. We want to know what birds you saw and how you liked the experience. – Chuck Hagner, Editor

Hotspots Near You

We publish up-to-date information about four easily accessible places to watch birds in every issue of BirdWatching magazine. For each hotspot, we offer a map, driving directions, a bird list, links, contact information, and a detailed description written by a local birder who knows the place well and birds it often. A version of the article above appeared in our October 2013 issue.

See all 172 hotspots.

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