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Triple Digit MIKIs!

September 27, 2018

Mississippi Kite photo by Rafael Galvez.

With two early morning Mississippi Kites (A.K.A. MIKIs or “Mickeys”) on Wednesday, we crossed the triple digit threshold to get to 101 on the season. This is already the third highest season total for this species and puts us within arm’s reach of the single season record of 128 from 2014.

Flight shots of migrant Mississippi Kites. Photos by Chris Payne.

Getting 28 more birds to set the record should be no problem with more than a month to go, right? Not necessarily. Kites are known as early-season migrants and historically are hard to come by at FKH later in the season. In fact, from 1999 to 2011, only about six MIKIs were recorded on average in October. Some numbers are working in our advantage though. The past five Octobers (excluding 2017 due to Hurricane Irma) have produced an average of 41 MIKIs, and the highest single-day total of 28 came on September 27th, (today!) 2012. It is impossible to predict how many we will finish with on the season; all we can do is keep our eyes on the skies and find out!

Photos of Mississippi Kites from the FKH deck by Bob Stalnaker.

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