29 April, 2013

Interesting day....

Several interesting points today.

Island Girl started her day on Saturday by flying to the SW. She flew down in elevation and by 0900 was perched on a PERFECT hunting site, a circular hilltop situated right above the largest open agricultural fields in the region. Have a look on Google Earth. This could not be a better location for hunting. She could see in all directions from her dominant location.

And having been through many such areas in Peru, I can state that this type of habitat is loaded with birdlife, especially doves and pigeons as well as a variety of passerines. No mystery why she was there.

Not sure if she was hunting or eating at that exact time but we know that she had not started her migration by then.

If you look below her perch, you will see many orchards of small trees. Not sure what the crop is (lemons? avocados?) but you can also see several large, modern homes. No doubt the residences of these farmers who appear to be doing quite well.

Later in the day, Island Girl continued migrating to the NW. As usual for her at this point in her migration, she followed the foothills up the Pacific coast and covered 213 km (132 miles).

By 5PM, she had arrived on a mountain top in the Casma District of Peru. If you have photos enabled on GE, go to the valley road to the east of this location and click on the photos. You can see several examples of this beautiful mountain where she perched and roosted for the night. She was located at about 9 degrees north latitude on her 11th day of migration.

Her roost was located in a draw on the western slope of this mountain at 3,184' elevation and about 23 km (14 miles) from the ocean. Did she watch the sun setting that night? What a view from there if it was clear.

She was getting close to the city of Chimbote and likely flew past Huascaran the next day. Situated well to her east, Huascaran is the highest mountain in Peru. Check out the photos on the road to Hauraz if you have the time. Incredibly beautiful.

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