Guidelines and Mods | Pop Video | View Calendar | Donate | Shop
Welcome to the tenth year of the Decorah Eagles. We hope you enjoy watching and learning about bald eagles with us! Click the livestream to watch, click here to pop video out, and scroll down the page to learn more about the eagles and their surroundings.
The Decorah eagles are nesting near the Decorah Trout Hatchery, located at 2325 Siewers Spring Rd in Decorah, IA. The female is known as Mom and the male is known as DM2. In general, the eagles begin courtship in October, productive mating in late January or early February, and egg-laying in mid to late February. Hatching usually begins in late March to early April, and the eaglets fledge in mid-to-late June. While young usually disperse between August and October, the adults remain on territory year round. They eat live and and dead fish, squirrels, other birds, rabbit, muskrat, deer, possum and anything else they can catch or find. To learn more about bald eagles, please follow this link to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology website. Visiting Decorah to see the eagles? Please read through our guide to eagle etiquette >> Bald Eagle Etiquette.
Female eagles are larger than male eagles, with slightly darker heads and more pronounced brows. The image below shows the differences in appearance between Mom and DM2 and should help in ID’ing them.
Dad, Mom’s original mate, disappeared in April of 2018. Based on plumage color, Mom was four years old in 2007, making her seventeen years old in 2020. Click here for a guide to aging bald eagles based on plumage color and patterns.
After two other males came and went (you can read more about that here), Mom accepted a third suitor in the fall of 2018. She and DM2 are entering their third season together.
Four nests (N0, N1, N2, and N2B) have been built on the Decorah territory. N0 was destroyed in a storm, the eagles left N1 on their own, and N2 was also destroyed in a storm. Fourth nest N2B is a little more complicated. Humans Neil Rettig and Kike Arnal built N2B in August of 2015. We hoped the starter nest would encourage the eagles to adopt it and keep building, which they did! Footage of the build can be seen here: https://youtu.be/2-xRSBBeIYs. A blog about the nest build can be read here.
TLDR: We won’t, but read on to learn why!When will we be able to tell the sex of the eaglets? We get asked this question every year. While most of us make private guesses, we don’t make them official – in no small part because we’ve been wrong before! Keep in mind that age is a bigger factor than sex in weight gain and size early in nest life. Sexual dimorphism begins to appear in some variables after about 20
One of the most common questions we’re getting right now is something along the lines of ‘Why don’t Mom and DM2 DO something about all of those beak-bonking battles?‘ We recognize that eagle parents are bonded to their children, so why don’t they stop potentially harmful behavior? It’s umwelt time, so let’s put our eagle heads on and think through the question! Competition is an important part of eagle ‘society’, but eagles also need to surrender food to hungry mates
It’s April 7 and a lot of you are wondering about the third egg. Will it hatch? It could! It has been almost 34 days since Mom laid her third egg, which is 33 days and 20 hours old as I write this. But her third egg almost always hatches 36 to 37 days after it was laid. If she goes 36 days, which is fairly common, hatch should happen on April 9th. We could see pip later today or
Place, as writer Thom Van Dooren points out, can be understood as an embodied, lived, and meaningful environment. Bald eagles clearly have a sense of place. Their territories are woven with layers of attention, meaning, and experience: spots to hunt, perch, and hide from the weather, materials to build and replenish their nests, and mates and family to bond with and care for. Eagles have neighbors beyond counting – squirrels, mice, raccoon, rabbits, muskrat, mink, coyotes, deer, prairie dogs, trout,
The Chicago Peregrine Program inspired me to write a quick blog on the colors and shapes of eggs. Bald eagles have white eggs, peregrine falcons have eggs that range from light cream through brick red, and red-tailed hawks have pale eggs that are lightly splotched with brown. How and why do the birds we watch lay differently-colored and shaped eggs? In general, female birds inherit egg colors and patterns from their female parents. Egg-shell is made primarily of calcium carbonate,
Click a title to read more
Where are our eaglets? All three are sticking fairly tight to their current areas, which are about 50 miles away from one another. D27, in Spillville, is the farthest north while D35, near Iowa City, is the farthest south. Eagle D27 D27 turns four in early April of this year. She is in the Spillville area on the western part of her winter range, not too far from Decorah. Brett pointed out that she tends to explore agricultural fields the
By Raptor Resource Project Director John Howe Where have the Decorah Eagles been? We have an update for you after several weeks of observation in the vicinity of N2B and a relatively new eagle nest within what we would describe as their territory. We will start by clarifying that we are not disclosing the location of this nest at the request of the property owner. The new nest is within the typical bald eagle territorial area of up to 6
Unwind, relax, and chill with videos from Decorah North, Decorah, and Great Spirit Bluff! I liked all of these videos, but I especially enjoyed the two eagles playing at Decorah North (five days into 2021 and I already have a candidate for next December’s top ten list!), the interaction between three adults in Decorah, and the beautiful eagles and coyotes at GSB. Thanks so much to our camera operators for finding such special moments, our videomakers for sharing them, and
Remember when DM2 brought nine fish in fifteen minutes? Our Decorah Eagles chat moderators did! On April 6, DM2 launched his own flying fishwagon, bringing in nine fish in just 15 minutes! He seems so proud of his accomplishment…as well he should! Even Mom seems impressed! Watch Tulsa’s original video here: https://youtu.be/4MJeKo1DkoI
We have your Sunday matinee nestflix megaroll, with videos from Decorah, Decorah North, and the Flyway. In Decorah, Mom and DM2 make a visit to N2B, while the Decorah North eagles busy themselves with nestorations and copulation. Check out the Flyway videos to see an eagle flying in very unusual way and relax with two sandhill cranes preening. As always, thanks to our camera operators for finding such special moments, our video makers for sharing them, and to you for
D34: April 5, 2020 @ 9:45 AM CDT D35: April 5, 2020 @ 4:07 PM CDT D36: April 8, 2020 @ 6:50 PM CDT
D34: June 18 @ 8:40 AM D35: June 21 @ 8:44 AM – fall turned fledge! D36: June 21 @ 6:09 PM
We often get questions about where the eaglets go after they disperse. We tracked eaglets in 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016, and 2017 to try to answer this question. For more information, visit our eagle maps.