January 5, 2019: Day Trip to Decorah

Story and photos by Robin Brumm

When the weather is going to be sunny and a decent temperature is predicted, I can hear Decorah calling, so I got up at Dark o’Clock (on a weekend!!!) and off I went! As I pulled up to the intersection of Trout Run Rd, and Siewers Springs road, I looked in all the favorite perch spots. No one on the Y branch, the maple tree, or the bluffs, so I turned toward the nest. I pulled off onto the shoulder of the road and saw that Mom was perched above and in a tree near the N2B tree, and DM2 was perched in the tree near the bridge & curve of the bike trail.

They both stayed in their respective perch places, until finally DM2 flew to the nest and then the skywalk. He wasn’t there very long and then flew off to the southwest. Mom stayed in the tree near N2B for quite a while. In fact, a red tailed hawk flew in a few trees away, but Mom only glanced at it occasionally and didn’t seem concerned. The hawk flew to the ground in the brush below and looked like it caught some type of prey, and flew off. Shortly after that, DM2 flew in with some nesting materials, and Mom was not far behind him. They made several in-and-outs with nesting materials and a stick or two.

I decided to walk over toward the nest. The trail in front of the nest was still covered with snow. They don’t scoop that part of the trail during the winter, and it is often used by cross county skiers, people snowshoeing, or “fat biking” (riding bikes with fat tires on the snow). As I got out of the car, I saw a mating attempt on the skywalk. They both then flew to a tree nearby, vocalized and perched for awhile before heading off to the southwest. About 5 minutes after they left, a sub adult flew to the maple, perched for just a few minutes and then flew off. It looked like it could be about 3 years old, give or take. It’s too bad none of them ever wear the name tags I made for them, when they stop by, lol

I waited an hour or so (okay, maybe 2 hours or so!!) and then headed for home. I decided to go the Bobway home. The Bobway, is a back roads route that Bob Anderson told me about. There is an eagles nest on that route, so I wanted to see if there was any activity. As I was driving along about 5-7 miles from the Bobway nest, I saw an eagle flying low over the road up ahead. I slowed down and as I got closer, I saw 4 eagles (one was a youngster) in the middle of a cornfield eating a dead carcass. Of course I had to take a few pictures. I then continued down the road and saw 2 eagles perched in the top of a pine tree. They could have been 2 of the eagles that were in the field, because 2 of them had flown off in the direction of the pine tree where they were perched. It was a few miles from the nest, so it might have been the Bobway eagles, but I have no way of know that, since I’ve never seen them close enough to note any ID markers. After a few more pictures I continued on my way home. What an exciting day! It’s a good eagle day when you see Mom and DM2 and at least 4 more eagles! Hopefully in 3 months, I will be able to see 5 eagles when I go to Decorah! (I’m hoping for 3 eaglets again this year!) I can’t wait to see how this season unfolds!

Note: I have added some photos to my album from 12-15-18. I went to Decorah that day but didn’t have time to write up a day trip. Mom and DM2 spent about an hour or more perched on the maple tree. I was able to get a few nice photos and wanted to share them with you. The photos are labeled with dates, so you know which photos are from which day.

RRP greatly appreciates Robin’s generosity in sharing her photos and reminds you they are copyright and may not be downloaded without her express written permission.

Featured photo: DM2 and Mom Decorah perched on the Maple.