Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Mother eagle sheltering her young
Despite today's snow, ice, and rain, the eagle family is doing fine. The parents were very careful to keep their babies sheltered. You can see Mom holding her wings out and up to keep the rain and snow from her young. The bowl of softer materials that the eagles built in the larger nest also helps keep the babies away from the wet. I hope this is the last snowstorm the eagle family faces.

We are also looking forward to peregrine season. I've got some estimated hatch dates:
  • Dairyland Genoa: 5/10
  • Xcel Sherco: 5/11
  • Great River Energy: 5/11
  • Xcel Blackdog: 5/16 
  • Xcel King Plant: 5/19
The Xcel Pawnee kestrels have laid egg #2. I don't feel quite as comfortable forecasting hatch for them, but I'll guess (a little weaker than an estimate) that hatch will occur around 5/20/2011. The kestrels are very fun to watch - they normally have a large brood which grows very quickly and behaves much more frenetically than the eagle young. Here is a link to a kestrel laying eggs (this is not one of our sites, but the video is very nice):
http://youtu.be/EGmzbS7IOVE

The Valmont owlets are growing rapidly. I need to thank the faithful forum members who have kept me up to date since we are having forum problems. I love these pics and would not get them otherwise. Click the Valmont Owl link in our nestviewer to watch this nest:
http://www.farmyou.com/falcon_cams/

The address looks a little odd because I moved the cams page to another domain (thanks, Ken!) to try to offload some traffic. But it is still the Raptor Resource Project. You can also visit our facebook to talk with other eaglecam fans:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Raptor-Resource-Project/103786266324668




34 comments:

Cap'n Sylvia Sharkbait said...

Thank you for the update and excellent information.

Ariun said...

Dear Amy, you guys are doing a great work. Thanks for the update. Watching the eagle is a life time experience. Thanks for giving this opportunity to many of us. Good luck with all your great work. Ariun

Patricia Chambers said...

Hi, Amy, thanks so much for the update. It was nerve-wrecking to not be able to see through the ice on the lens. Do you know why the Social Stream is gone, I really liked that because people could tell you what you missed

J.G. said...

Thank you for keeping us informed! At one point yesterday I could see both parents on the nest, looking cold, with snow falling on their backs instead of on the babies underneath. Something any parent can relate to: in difficult conditions, the kids are the priority.

Linda said...

I have thoroughly enjoyed your posts and the ustream live video site. Several of my coworkers are also watching it and we have daily discussions and "viewings" together to enjoy. My family, and several teacher friends are also enjoying but also using this as an opportunity to educate children on our National Bird.

My heart swells with pride and wonder each time I watch this family of magnificent birds.

Jacqueline said...

The eagle cam is the best I have ever seen. Yesterday was my first day watching and what a hard day it was! Now that I know they all survived, I can get on with my life.
thanks for this.
Jacqueline

Dawn said...

Amy, the smallest eaglet (the last to hatch, I'm guessing) seems so far behind developmentally, and it appears that its siblings are getting the bulk of the food. What do you think the chances are that the smallest eaglet will "make it"?

Marsha said...

Amy: You rock. I had such bad visions yesterday of the nest falling under the weight of the snow, but all went well, and this family is just amazing to watch. Their cooperation and dedication is a lesson to be learned by all.

info said...

Great work! I have the same question as Dawn, about the littlest eaglet. Kinda worried about that one.

Crimson Cat Studios said...

Great work! I have the same question as Dawn, about the littlest eaglet. Kinda worried about that one.

DotK said...

Thanks Amy. Thanks Ken. Thanks for the great update.

Dawn said...

Amy, I also wanted to know how common it is for an eagle to lay three eggs and for the adults to raise the three young all the way to the point of fledging.
There once was a photo of Prince William and Prince Harry (maybe 6 and 4 yrs old, respectively) with Princess Diana, and the caption read, "The heir and the spare."
I'm thinking of the littlest eaglet as being there in case something happened to one of its bigger siblings, the backup eaglet you might say?

Sheila said...

Can I just say Thank you to the team for such a wonderful project. My family and i have been watching since the second hatch and we turn it on every morning and leave it on all day. They are fascinating and so educational. Much appreciation for your dedication in keeping this available for the public!

Toobusyvol said...

My fellow eagle watchers and I are also concerned about the smallest eaglet. Can you offer any encouragement or explanation?
Thank you so much for allowing us to be a part of this fascinating study.

Joan Rood said...

Thank you, Amy, for the recent update on the eagles following yesterday's (Tues, 4/19) snowstorm in Decorah. My heart sank when we couldn't view the eagles for most of that day due to the snow packed on the camera lens. Later in the afternoon, a small 'peep hole' provided barely enough of a view to see that EVERYthing was white, in and out of the nest. I loved the photo of one of the adults with her wings spread over the chicks. Made me feel a whole lot better!

School of Dentistry said...

Thank you so much for the site and the updates! I third/fourth the question about the youngest eaglet - last time I watched them feed, he/she didn't even try to get near the food. :(

Cap'n Sylvia Sharkbait said...

To those who wonder about the smallest eaglet, yes it hatched four days after the first eaglet. I was also worried that maybe the other two were pushing it out of the food line, but then a couple of days ago when Dad was feeding them #3 pushed its way to the front. Dad fed it until it was full and then the other two got fed. It says in the info that this eagle pair has already successfully fledged two sets of trios so I have hopes for the little one.

jane said...

I don't know how it happened but this morning I saw FOUR babies, have they been holding out on us? Yesterday was very stressfull, I waited all day for the ice to clear and I also miss the stream, what happened?

Janet said...

It looks like the adults always cover the little guy first. Last night the bigger babies were sometimes partially exposed, but never the tiny one.

Mollie said...

Hi,
I'm mesmerized by the Decorah eagles' nest! As others have said, yes, very hard to watch Mother Nature do her thing and see how her creatures survive an unusual April snow with wind and cold temps. And I also wonder about the runt. S/he is younger than the other two, but shouldn't it catch up with them? For those interested here's a link to the peregrine falcon scrape in Harrisburg,PA. Eggs to hatch soon: http://pacast.com/players/falcon.asp

susie said...

I feel better about the little one. Thank everyone!

This is true Reality TV!

Cap'n Sylvia Sharkbait said...

Dad is feeding the eaglets right now and guess who is first in line? Yep, eaglet #3. While the first two were stretching the little one snuck into position for a fish lunch. Update: mom just relieved dad and eaglet #1 decided that it is hungry too. They seem to get fed several times a day so I think they all get plenty of food. How convenient to live right above a fish hatchery!

Mollie said...

@Cap'n Slyvia Sharkbait: yes, I saw the little eaglet getting lots of food too. It seems one parent paid more attention to it when feeding--while I was watching them the parent eagles switched out and the 2nd one really let the little one get its fair share!

Kai Jordan said...
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Cathy said...

What an amazing experience this has been I have always loved nature & wildlife but Bald Eagles to me are the most magnificent of all So I am blessed beyond measure by what you & your team are doing to make this all possible God Bless you all!

bubbat08 said...

Merlinda.. I am so glad that quite a few of the viewers are concerned about the little eaglet. Everytime I went in to see how they were doing the two larger ones were being fed and the little one never seemed to get to the food. I have gotten up at 2:00 am just to see if he/she is breathing. Also, its nice to see that MOM and DAD are taking care of the three. This site has been a real hoot to watch. Thanks for sharing it with us, the public.

BobaFfeTT said...

I too, have been keeping an eye out for the little one. I can only tell them apart because the smallest one still has its white tuft of hair on top. The biggest one is already sprouting small black feathers. It does get its turn which I am glad. Maybe a bit behind the rest in growth but since they're near a fish hatchery... plenty of food to be had.

BobaFfeTT said...

bubbat08, I share your concern about the little one. :) But it makes me glad to see the track record of these two is pretty good. They have raised 3 eaglets successfully in the past and so it calms my nerves and I think the little one would be alright. But I know what you mean! I also caught myself peering at this monitor checking if it was still breathing! :)Well, as you can see, they're bigger now and although the runt is smaller, it's also growing... :)

BobaFfeTT said...

This morning, the father eagle brought back something really furry and it took a while to pull out all the fur. The little one was up front but it got the flying fur in its face so that it shook its head up several times and tried to get the fur out of its eyes. Awww... But they are getting along! :) I keep toggling back from videos 14 days ago to today. How fast they grow! I'm in for the long haul. I'll watch them now until they fly away. :)

BobaFfeTT said...

These have to be the luckiest trio of eaglets... At any given time, they have 70,000 people watching after them... To think this drama happens in EVERY bird's nest in the world... I am glad we are seeing this and now we care more. :)
Imagine such beauty and fascination remained hidden for so long. This is truly one of the perfect uses for modern technology... for learning, enlightenment and education. And this is one of the best examples of man and nature working together and not against one another. :)

Boo Radly said...
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Boo Radly said...
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