It’s been a wild week at all of our sites: Mom and DM2 have appeared at N1, N2B, and M2 enough to have all of us hoping for a change in real estate, Mr. North and DNF are coping with an influx of unwelcome hungry visitors, and the Flyway is ever-so-slowly starting to ice up as our long, warm fall finally comes to a close. I liked all of these videos, but I especially enjoyed Mom and DM2’s copulation on the Y, the eagle interaction at Decorah North and Mr. North on the left, and the skating sandhill cranes on the Mississippi Flyway. I’ve got two really interesting stories filed under Odds and Ends. Both are good, but check out the sound archivist if you only have time for one.
Thank you so much to our camera operators and video makers for finding and sharing our beautiful world, and to you for watching, learning, and especially for caring. Happy almost Fri-yay, everyone!
December 2, 2021: Mom Decorah on the Skywalk
December 2, 2021: Mom on M2, N2B & the skywalk! – https://youtu.be/SRlVzPSWrs0. Mom was at N2B for almost an hour and Rosieann B caught all of it. Watch the whole thing or skip to 5:46 to enjoy the Queen of Decorah sitting on the Skywalk – one of my favorite views in the world! Mom and DM2 aren’t working on N2B, but it’s still wonderful to see them there. We can always hope! Looking for a shorter video? Check out Tulsa’s cut here: https://youtu.be/ZPMRz8ucuWA.
December 1, 2021: Mom catches fish, copulation on the Y – https://youtu.be/nS5y0s_8HwQ. In this year’s opening season of ‘As The Nest Turns in Decorah’, Mom and DM2 have a lot of us wondering about their nest plans! The video opens with Mom catching a fish. She joins DM2 at the Y at 7:14. The two copulate and the video continues with a nice long look at the pair as they survey their realm.
December 2, 2021: “Look, honey – another guest just showed up!” There are four eagles in this picture
December 1, 2021: A subadult, two adults, a fish, & a lot of screaming – https://youtu.be/O8ZNTl11pak. liznm says “Three eagles are on a tree. One flew off. The camera found a sub adult on the meadow. After three minutes, one of the adults is calling. Mr. North and DNF are sitting still on the tree. An eagle flies over the meadow and another eagle follows. After 5 minutes and 56 seconds the eagle with the fish is followed by two eagles.” It’s not always easy living on a super flyway!
Where did all those eagles come from? We blogged about the North Super Flyway back in 2016. Learn more about it at our old blogspot: https://raptorresource.blogspot.com/2016/11/where-did-all-these-eagles-come-from.html. You can get a nice look at Tuesday’s eagle congregation here: https://youtu.be/EyJMmGDAbGs. I’ve talked with a few banders about what seems to me like an unusual migration. The warm weather seemed to push migration a little later and make it more drawn out. I hope to blog on that next week.
December 1, 2021: Mr. North is on the left – https://youtu.be/me6WdyPZXDI. A nice look at the Norths and the North nest, with beautiful bird chatter in the background. Pay attention to Mr. North at 36 seconds and you’ll see him respond to the neighborhood crow watch. He flies off shortly afterwards. DNF appears watchful, but doesn’t leave for another couple minutes. She flies off in roughly the same direction.
November 30, 2021: Mr. North stick grab and delivery – https://youtu.be/K7AT6XDSmK4. At 35 seconds, we see Mr. North fly out from a location beneath the north nest tree. He circles around to catch the wind and delivers a long, straight stick to the nest, nearly hitting DNF with his brand new javelin! Check 1:12 as Mr. North covers her with a wing! She assumes stick duty while he moves soft materials. The nest is filled with dry grass and looks warm and inviting in the beautiful golden light.
December 2, 2021: The Mississippi Flyway slows down as ice begins to form
November 30, 2021: Cranes on the ice – https://youtu.be/tD3wSO6g_x4. Ice is beginning to seal over the shallows, but that doesn’t stop these sandhill cranes! Check 36 seconds as the two move onto the ice, stepping delicately and sometimes breaking through as they glide across it. Minnesota peeps, take note – if it doesn’t hold a sandhill crane, it won’t hold you!
November 30, 2021: Swans at lunch – https://youtu.be/A3cj03xT7ME. The synchronized swan swimming team goes bottoms up as they forage on the bottom of the river, accompanied by a few intrepid coots. The apparent depth of the water and presence of just a few swans makes me wonder if they aren’t trumpeters, but they aren’t quite close enough for us to see their eyes and black facial masks.
We wrote about foraging sandhill cranes and trumpeter swans here: https://www.raptorresource.org/2021/10/29/four-foraging-stories-from-the-flyway/. Enjoy them now – the long, warm fall will be ending soon!
Odds and Ends
Why this wildlife expert is making his archive public: https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-59404975. This is beyond cool. A wildlife archivist is making his entire sound archive public. I listened to a small portion of it this morning – amazing! Martin’s organization is here: https://thelisteningplanet.com/ and his archive is here: https://music.apple.com/gb/artist/the-listening-planet/1588978290.
Low tech restoration has high impact on wildlife and working lands: https://www.blm.gov/press-release/low-tech-restoration-has-high-impact-wildlife-and-working-lands. This is a really cool project to restore wet meadows to dry public lands in Wyoming. It’s a high impact, low-tech project that people throughout the community can participate in. I’ll be looking for more of these sorts of projects in 2022, so please let me know about any projects in your neighborhood! #50statesofconservation