The morning was beautiful and hot spent out on the rocks doing raptor surveys. It was a briefly intense hike to the site but once in place the view was amazing. Although early in the season there was a definite moment of awe and feeling of this summer will be great!

A variety of birds were flying around, while in the distance we were searching for raptors specifically. So while conducting the survey I learned of the White-throated Swifts that perch on the rocky cliffs as well as the lovely Violet-green Swallows in the area. Once observing a peregrine falcon flying quickly around a Golden Eagle. I learned how to identify these raptors as well as the other birds nearby as they flew past. The raptors are distinguishable based on color, size, flight patterns and wings. The identifiable characteristics of these raptors vary slightly based on maturity of the bird. Eagles will have a steady flight and their wings are mostly leveled and flat, looking as if they are just soaring through the air. Near the tips of the wings the feathers spread out looking finger-like. The Golden Eagles will have their wings at a slight upward angle. The morning consisted of observing and note taking, wrapping up with only the two raptor sightings and a nest far off in the distance.

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Written by Alliyah Gifford
I lived in Pueblo, Colorado and completed my bachelor degree in Biology from Colorado State University-Pueblo. Through this university, I had the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica and work with sea turtles. That peaked my interest in traveling while lending a helping hand along the way. I love to be outside exploring and await new experiences and opportunities.