Kick your feet up, grab something warm, and get ready for NestFlix! At Decorah North, the eaglets experiment with new food, test their tiny wings, and show us their newly found poop-shooting prowess! DN13 and DN14 are 18 and 16 days old today – smack dab in the middle of their third week of life. We are looking forward to Mohawks, mega Cropzillas, pellet casting (yesterday’s fish tail was not 100% digestible, DN14!), pinfeathers, eaglet explorers, and even bigger Clown Clompers. You think those footpads are big now? Just wait! Follow this link to learn more about an eagle’s third week of life: https://www.raptorresource.org/2021/04/12/eaglet-growth-and-development-week-three-2/.
Meanwhile, the Mississippi Flyway is teeming with migratory birds right now, like the beautiful Northern Shoveler that we included in this video round-up.
As always, thanks to our camera operators and video makers for finding and sharing such special moments, and to you for watching, learning, and especially for caring.
Decorah North Eagles
April 12, 2021: DN14, left and DN13, right
April 12, 2021: A warble, poop shoots – https://youtu.be/BW0bphdIrEw. The little eaglets are well-fed and it shows! The video opens with DN13 warbling (stretching its little grey wings up above its head). I love to see the eaglets play with and explore their rapidly growing wings! Look for a dual poop shoot starting at 43 seconds. DN13 is a little more coordinated than DN14, but both eaglets are making great progress on fundamental skills like grabbing food and shooting poop out of the nest!
April 12, 2021: Sweet sleeping eaglets – https://youtu.be/Q85lJGtKE_Y. Two little eaglets/snug in a tree/sleeping and dreaming/content as can be! Exactly what the video says: a wonderfully relaxing video of sleeping eaglets. Do eagles dream? We think they do: https://www.raptorresource.org/2020/02/20/sweet-eagle-dreams/.
April 11, 2021: DN14 swallows a fish tail! https://youtu.be/o9g94cs2s8s. DNF gives DN13 a fish tail, but it can’t quite swallow it. She takes it back, tries once more, and then offers it to DN14, who gulps it down! Note DNF’s careful intervention – she is handling the fish tail to the eaglets body first and watching closely as they try to eat it. Eagles are wonderful parents!
April 11, 2021: Moments – https://youtu.be/E_dLwWNJoFk. Look for a tug-o-fish between DN13 and DN14, DNF offering a leg of some sort, a ‘day at the beach’ as Mr. North covers his eaglets with nesting material, and DN13 escaping out from underneath Mr. North’s feathery coverlet!
April 10, 2021: DN13, DN14, and their first cowghetti – https://youtu.be/e6tM8WZk0y0. Ewwwwww – what is that? It’s cowghetti, or cow placenta! Placenta looks extremely unappealing, but it is nutritious and very easy to get! Sated, the messy little eaglets lie down and preen. Don’t miss 5:10, when D14 allopreens its older sibling, nibbling away around DN13’s earholes. The video closes with Mombrella protecting her growing eaglets from the rain as DN14 (I think) appears to wave goodbye!
Diction-Aerie Word Of The Day: Mombrella
Mombrella: A portmanteau formed by combining the words ‘Mom’ and ‘Umbrella’: Mom covering her eaglets to shield them from rain and snow. See also Poptent.
April 11, 2021: Northern Shoveler
April 11, 2021: Northern Shoveler – https://youtu.be/PgsNjyujip0. I could never pick one favorite duck species, but I could pick maybe 15 or so favorites – and the Northern Shoveler would definitely make the list! Look at this beautiful male shoveler with his lovely plumage, bright orange feet and legs, and giant schnozz! Northern Shovelers use their large, spoon-like bills to filter tiny crustaceans, other aquatic invertebrates, and seeds out of the water with comb-like projections (called lamellae) along the edge of their bills.