February 19, 2021: Eagle Maps!

We hope you enjoy today’s eagle map bonanza! D24, D36, and D27 sent postcards and two photographers took photos of eagle #307, an eagle that Brett has been tracking since 2015. So where is everbirdie? Let’s start with our birds!

D24, D27, and D36

Five year-old D24 is spending time on the Turkey River southwest of Decorah, between Ridgeway and Protivin, not far from the site of his 2020 Valentine’s Day airmail! It’s no surprise D24 decided to stay, or at least return, since the river, floodplain, and farmland all combine to create excellent habitat for wintering eagles. Have D24 and four year-old sibling D27 crossed paths? The two are ranging through the same area, although D27 usually hangs out a little east of D24’s present location. We hope he sends more postcards!

Meanwhile, D36 is southbound and down as of Friday, February 12! Brett’s latest reading showed him just north of Columbus Junction, not far from Lock and Dam 17. D27 spent a lot of time here in 2018, although she hasn’t been this far south since. At the time, we wrote:
“We often talk about eagles wintering along the river, but I was still blown away by Lori’s photos! Bald eagles are VERY social outside of their breeding grounds and congregating is part of the #staywarm strategy ‘forage in groups’! Wherever D27 is today, you can be sure she’s in good company.” I included Lori’s photos to show everyone what the area looks like!

Non-toxic ammo rules and regulations

A lot of you asked about lead-free/non-toxic ammo following D35’s death. We put together a round-up of the latest state and federal rules here, along with some suggestions for action: https://www.raptorresource.org/learning-tools/hunt-and-fish-lead-free/toxic-and-non-toxic-shot-regulation-federal-and-state-by-state/. Three things you can do immediately:

  • If you hunt and fish, switch to unleaded ammo and tackle.
  • Already switched? Please share your reasons and experience!
  • Find local people who share your concerns and feelings. California’s non-toxic law was supported by a coalition of 80 animal protection, public health and environmental organizations, many local governments, more than 100 California veterinarians, and dozens of scientists.
Eagle 307

We saw a new eagle this week! A huge thanks to photographers Tim Brandenburg and Mark Washburn for reaching out to us about the eagles they photographed along the Mississippi River. They both took photos of 307, another eagle enrolled in Brett’s study! 307 summers in the far north, winters along the Mississippi River, and was maybe eight miles from my home in early February. 307 looks wonderful and we all appreciated a chance to see him.

Thanks to the Kohler Trust for Preservation/ Kohler Company for supporting Brett’s research, to Brett and his staff for sharing their maps, data, and expertise, and to Tim and Mark for the pictures of 307! If you’d like to follow the travels of any of the eagles we’ve tracked, check out our interactive maps at https://www.raptorresource.org/learning-tools/eagle-map/.