April 27, 2020: Nest news and raptor movie marathon!

Happy Monday, everyone! Put your feet up and grab some snacks – we’ve got your raptor movie marathon and nest news now! Let’s start with some quick catch-up. As of today, D34 and D35 turn 22 days old and little D36 turns 19 days old, while not-so-little DN12 at the North nest turns 28 days old. The tiny terror-dactyls are casting pellets, sprouting pinfeathers, testing not-so-tiny wingflaps, and tarsi-shuffling around their nests. While they can’t yet tear their own meals, they are lining up for the defurring, defeathering, and definning lessons that precede each crop-stuffing food fest. Some of their cropzillas look like they’ve been eating basketballs instead of trout or cow-ghetti. It’s a wonder they can stand at times – which might be why they are eating a lot of breakfasts and dinners in bed!

Several of you have asked whether the Decorah triple-threat is being a little nicer to one another than they usually are. As the eaglets grow and a pecking order is established, bonking subsides. Right now, the eaglets are too busy eating, growing, and sleeping for the all-out beak battles of their first two weeks. The cold spring weather could also have put a damper on some early bonking behavior. When Mom and DM2 weren’t brooding, we often saw the eaglets cuddle-puddling in the cold. It’s been nice to see them sprawling and snoozing in the sun now that warmer weather has finally arrived!

Thanks to our camera operators for finding such special moments, our videomakers for sharing them, and to you for watching, learning, sharing – and especially for caring! I hope you enjoy these videos as much as we did.

Decorah Eagles
April 27, 2020, left to right: D36, D35, D34, Mom

April 27, 2020, left to right: D36, D35, D34, Mom

April 26: Cast a pellethttps://youtu.be/EWKkd36ZOB0. Pellet casting looks alarming, but it is the only way the eaglets can rid of indigestible materials that can’t pass through their GI tract. Given all they’ve been eating, it is no wonder there are pellets to cast!

April 26: Mom brings another whopper! https://youtu.be/ZAMWhVOtfiE. It’s fresh sushi for supper at N2B! Mom expertly tears off pieces for the eaglets, who snatch them out of her beak like their crops weren’t already bulging (seriously, check out D36). We have a ‘Lady and the Tramp’ moment at 25:09, as D34 and D35 share a piece of fish skin, and D34 gets a large piece of skin and the tail at 25:28 – although Mom doesn’t seem convinced her eaglet can get the whole thing down! By the end of the video, the eaglets seem too stuffed to stand and we get a nice poopshoot from D36 at 28:59.

April 25, 2020: Look at those Crops-Winging, Warble & Preening- Game of Grab The Corn Huskhttps://youtu.be/F7BKOehUcUY. The eaglets are enjoying another nice day on the nest! We see a little wingercizing from D36 early on, a preening party, and some napping. At 4:40, D35 grabs some nesting material and plays house, moving it from one part of the nest to another (and intriguing D36 along the way. At 5:45, something outside the nest catches everybirdie’s attention. We can’t see what they are looking at, although we hear little birds nearby and the crow alarm in the distance. Corn husk play begins in the seventh minute and gets serious in the eighth minute as D35 joins in! It’s extremely cute to see little D36 moving around a big husk.

April 25, 2020: Active eaglets, DM2 delivers, Mom feedshttps://youtu.be/6KPsnMz2UYo. You know an eaglet is full when it doesn’t get up to join the food line right away! Mom feeds the peaglets and flies out, leaving them alone in the nest. We get a little brief bit of bonking before the three cuddle-puddle up for a nap near the rails. Close-ups start at 13:32.

April 23, 2020: Lil D36’s poop shoot lands on D35 and Mom! https://youtu.be/KYJSZPMwIFY. Short and very funny! Eaglets instinctively shoot poop, but their aim isn’t always good!

April 23, 2020: Eaglet face and foot closeupshttps://youtu.be/MUEGKnFtgCI. Exactly what it says. Fans of sweet eaglet faces and ginormous clown clompers, this video is for you!

Decorah North Eagles
April 27, 2020: Mr. North and DN12

April 27, 2020: Mr. North and DN12

April 26, 2020: DN12 is 26 days old, some highlightshttps://youtu.be/rJQOjSgNWmk. The video opens with DN12 paying attention to something (probably a nearby bird) outside the nest. We have a feeding with some adorable eaglet screeing in the first and second minutes. DN12 isn’t quite walking yet, but it is hard to move that big body around by shuffling on tarsi. It won’t be long! Look for some great close-ups starting in the 14th minute, including face, feet, talons (mostly black), foot pads, and down.

April 25, 2020: The story of the fish at the valley of the Northshttps://youtu.be/xyymlR2g0rA. DNF brings a rainbow trout to the nest and leaves it. Mr. North feeds DN12 a few bites before eating the rest of the fish himself. When DNF comes back, she appears to be looking for her fish. Where did it go? Mr. North brings her another one! Listen for her teak-kettling! I love how she accepts his food gifts – it always seems like she is concerned he’s going to fly away with the food, even though he is very good about giving it up!

April 25, 2020: Cowghetti(Placenta)For Brunch&Huge Crophttps://youtu.be/oQh1BLSd5bA. Ewwwww – what is that stringy stuff? It’s placenta! When the cows calve, they leave afterbirth behind: a very easy source of nutrition for the eagles, who waste no time getting it to the nest! DN12 eats it very enthusiastically and we get a look at its huge crop starting at 7:50. While clown clompers aren’t easy to shuffle on, it seems to have some trouble balancing right away! We can hear some sort of vehicle (my guess is that it is a utility vehicle belonging to one of the farmers in the area). Mr. North and DM2 appear to be keeping an eye on it!

April 24, 2020: Decorah North Coyoteshttps://youtu.be/VorlWarTZn0. A really cool look at an often elusive animal! If you would like to read more about them, follow this link: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2016/08/coyote-america-dan-flores-history-science/. For coyote facts, click here: https://www.livescience.com/27976-coyotes.html.

April 24, 2020: DN12 is 24 days old, cute momentshttps://youtu.be/VleYSiHsBBE. The wing close-ups that open the video are nothing short of spectacular! It is extremely fun (and cute) to watch DN12 interacting with its parents and (at 8:41) look at it stretch those wings! When did they get so long? We also get nice close-ups and a look at playing house in the 10th minute.