May 12, 2020: Where is eagle D27?
Where is D27? The just-over three-year-old eaglet sent a postcard from the Frankville, Iowa area a couple of days ago! Brett wrote: “D-27 completed a cool loop heading ESE into WI for a few days, definitely out of her typical winter range, and eventually returned to the east side of her winter range near Frankville, IA. The visit to Patch Grove, WI was curious, as that is the farthest into WI she has ever been. I wonder if she saw some other eagles foraging off to the east and went to check it out?”
Could D27 see to Patch Grove from the Mississippi River? At a mile high, the horizon is about 89 miles away. At two miles high, the horizon is about 125 miles away. D27 made a series of short flights – the longest was 29 miles – south and east: first to the Mississippi River and then to Patch Grove. Her journey from the river to Patch Grove was just five miles: well within the limits of the horizon and just close enough to see a group of eagles foraging and in flight. I also wonder if a kettle of turkey vultures might attract her attention. Vultures follow Tawny and Steppe eagles. Would a hungry, wandering eagle follow vultures?
My guess on D27’s migratory departure date has already passed. Feel free to make your guess in the comments. As always, we wish her favorable winds and clear skies. Wherever and whenever you leave, D27, don’t forget to write!
A thousand thanks to Brett Mandernack and the staff of Eagle Valley for sharing their knowledge, expertise, and maps! If you’d like to explore the travels of any of the eagles we’ve tracked, or check D27’s previous departure dates, take a look at our interactive eagle maps: https://www.raptorresource.org/learning-tools/eagle-map/