Fall Migration is considered to be one of the birding wonders of the world. Well known birder Phil Brown is the Bird Conservation Director of the The Harris Center for Conservation Education in Hancock, NH. Under his guidance, Harris Center biologists collect hawk migration data as part of an international effort to monitor raptor population trends. The center has been partnering with Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Pennsylvania to better understand Broad-winged Hawk ecology. Phil will explain what has been learned to date about the migration of Broad-winged hawks breeding in New England that travel to their wintering grounds in South America and back.
photo by Chuck Carlson
The Broad-winged Hawk, despite its familiarity in the Northeast as a common raptor during the breeding season and in fall migration, is a poorly understood species throughout much of its life cycle. During the breeding seasons of 2021 through 2023, Harris Center staff and volunteers spent hundreds of hours finding and monitoring Broad-winged Hawk nests through a collaboration with Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, which conducted subsequent trapping and tagging of several adult hawks. Five adult Broad-winged Hawks were successfully trapped and outfitted with cellular or satellite transmitters and now provide a sample representation of migratory routes, wintering sites, and breeding territories of individuals within the New England breeding population. The findings yield critical information about habitat selection and demonstrate differences in migration timing and wintering ecology from other populations of this species in eastern North America. Through the use of transmitters and the nest monitoring component, conservation biologists have learned critical information necessary to better conserve this emblematic woodland raptor.
On Tuesday, November 14th, at 7 p.m., York County Audubon is pleased to host Phil Brown, Bird Conservation Director & Land Specialist at the Harris Center for Conservation Education in Hancock, NH. Phil spent his childhood in Staten Island, NY, where he was fascinated with the natural world. After studying at Rutgers, he took to the wilder woodlands of New Hampshire, realizing a lifelong dream, and ultimately becoming NH Audubon’s Director of Land Management, and then joining the Harris Center.
At the Harris Center, he leads conservation research projects focused on a variety of birds. These projects currently include Broad-winged Hawk research, an American Kestrel nest box project, Saw-whet Owl banding station, the Pack Monadnock Raptor Observatory, and a Common Nighthawk migration watch. Phil is also a frequent field trip and nature tour leader in NH and beyond, where he guides for several companies and organizations. He lives in Hancock, NH, with his wife, Julie, and two children.
This program will be presented via Zoom only. To view it, you’ll need to register in advance. To do so, please click on this link and enter your name and email address:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
We hope you can join us via Zoom!