The fall bird migration is an exciting time for birding. With migrants on the move your favorite birding site can change within a few days, with different species traveling in and out. Every spring and fall, thousands of raptors migrate, and birders may see or hear eagles, kestrels, Sharp-shinned Hawks, Ospreys, Broad-winged Hawks, and Peregrine Falcons among others.
The NYS Birding Trail highlights several hawk watches including Bear Mountain Hawk Watch at Bear Mountain State Park, Hook Mountain Hawk Watch, and Mount Peter Hawkwatch Trailway, all within the Hudson Valley segment.
It’s also important for everyone to turn off the lights for birds at night. DEC launched the ‘Lights Out’ initiative aimed at keeping non-essential outdoor lighting from affecting the ability of birds to migrate successfully. Many species of shorebirds and songbirds rely on constellations to help them navigate to and from their summer breeding grounds through the State. Excessive outdoor lighting, especially in adverse weather conditions, can cause these migrating birds to become disoriented, a phenomenon known as fatal light attraction.
While you observe all the birds migrating this fall, finish your 2022 I Bird NY Challenge offered for beginners in English and Spanish, as well as experienced in both English and Spanish. Don’t forget to sign up for our Words of a Feather newsletter, a monthly e-newsletter for birding news, updates on the NYS Birding Trail, and upcoming birding events near you.
Photo of red-tailed hawk courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.