I just got an email that the merlins are on the move.
In most states, trapping season has begun. Some people already have their birds for the year.
I like to wait a bit, not only because migrating raptors haven't found their way here just yet, but also, if I train them right, they will be ready to hunt before hunting season opens.
Unless I am trapping small raptors. If that is the case, my intended quarry is often starlings and sparrows, and their is no closed season on those birds.
So, as we gear up for trapping merlins and peregrines, we watch the skies and we watch the coming weather.
Generally, I watch the NOAA website and watch for the cold fronts swooping down from the north, pushing the birds in front of it.
Another good place to keep an eye on is the hawk watch websites.One of the most famous, of course, is the one in Pennsylvania,but there are others all across the nation. We wait and watch to see where the birds are coming from, and more importantly, when.
So, I get an email today, and apparently, the birds are moving down from Minnesota, or at least starting too.
It is time to start gearing up for trapping.