Thursday, August 27, 2015

Decorah North Nest

We surveyed a new nest last week. 'Decorah North' is a very large nest in a secluded valley north of Decorah. A few statistics from our trip:
  • The nest is 56 feet off the ground 
  • It is nine feet long at its longest point
  • It is seven feet wide at its widest point
  • It has a total area of 49 square feet
  • It is about 5.5 feet high
  • The eagles began building it in 2013.
Using the method listed here (, I calculated the nest's weight at roughly 2100 pounds (using 37 pounds per cubic foot for wood weight). Good thing it is located in a sturdy white oak tree!

Kike, a professional photographer and climber, found the following bones in the nest:
  • Adult male turkey leg and and ilium
  • Turkey polt leg. 
  • Fawn leg
  • Adult raccoon skull
  • Young raccoon skull
We are looking at adding cams to this nest and will keep everyone posted on our progress. Given the nest's size and prey remains, these must be industrious, hungry eagles!

Quick note: The nest is located on private property and can't be seen from the road. We are asking everyone to respect the landowner's privacy (and cattle) and refrain from visiting the nest in person. Thank you.

From above. Kike used his climbing helmet for scale

Another view. More than one person could fit quite comfortably

The nest from the side

The fawn's leg. Note how tightly woven the nest is. 

The nest from above. Kike's shadow helps provide a little scale.