May 8, 2019: Where is D27?

May 6, 2017: D27’s Map

Where is D27? She is currently spending time near Frankville, Iowa. How does that compare with last year? In 2018, D27 left the Decorah area on April 25 and flew north and east, reaching the Mississippi River on May 4th. She turned north along the Big Muddy, crossing it not far from Great Spirit Bluff, and continued north-northeast through Wisconsin until she reached Cable, where she hung a west turn. After a brief sojourn not far from Pine City, MN, she headed north-northwest. D27 crossed into Canada on May 18 of 2018, 23 days and roughly 560 miles later.

Why is D27 hanging around later this year? The weather has been chillier and much wetter than it was last year, making conditions less favorable for moving north. High, fast rivers are harder to fish (many areas are breaking flood longevity records this year) and human-derived sources of food (think feedlots) become scarcer as eagles move north. Breeding birds are hauling tailfeather to arrive on their territories, but D27 can bide her time until the weather and food conditions are just right for her journey north. Stay safe, D27 – and don’t forget to send an airmail when you decide to leave!

Thanks as always to Brett Mandernack and the staff of Eagle Valley for sharing their maps, data, and insight with us. You guys rock! To explore the travels of all of the eagles we’ve tracked, visit our interactive maps: