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Welcome to the fifth year of the Decorah North Eagles. We hope you enjoy watching and learning about bald eagles with us! Click the livestream to watch and scroll down the page to learn more about the eagles and their surroundings. For branch ID, follow this link.
The Decorah North eagles are nesting on private property north of Decorah, Iowa. Their nest is located in a white oak tree in a scrap of forest bordering a valley. A stream is located across a field where cattle are pastured. 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.
The eagles eat live and dead fish, squirrels, other birds, rabbit, muskrat, deer, possum and anything else they can catch or find. To learn more about bald eagles in general, please follow this link to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology website.
Decorah North Bald Eagles: DNF and Mr. North
The male is known as Mr. North. The female is the Decorah North Female, or DNF, who replaced Mrs. North in the summer of 2018. We don’t know exactly how or when it happened. You can read more about it here: https://www.raptorresource.org/2019/01/20/north-nest-announcement/
The first nest at the North site was built in a pine tree. The branches collapsed after the second nesting season and the eagles moved to a dead elm tree. They nested there for just one year before moving to their current location in late 2013. In August of 2018, their nest collapsed and slid or fell out of the nest tree during an extremely heavy storm. None of the tree branches were broken or damaged, so we decided to build a starter nest in the same spot. 2020 will mark their seventh season and fourth nest on this territory.
The North nest is about 56 feet off the ground. It is seven feet long at its longest point, four feet wide at its widest point, is about 3.5 feet high, and has a perimeter of roughly 18 feet.
Bald Eagle Vocalization
Learn More About Bald Eagles
We’re writing a series of blogs about the first few weeks of an eaglet’s life. An eaglet spends roughly 75 to 80 days in the nest. For about the first half, it grows and gains weight. For about the second half, it grows flight feathers and starts developing the skills it will need post-fledge. We will focus on week three in this blog. DN13 and DN14 are 18 and 16 days old. During week two (seven to 14 days), the
We’re writing a series of blogs about the first few weeks of an eaglet’s life. An eaglet spends roughly 75 to 80 days in the nest. For about the first half, it grows and gains weight. For about the second half, it grows flight feathers and starts developing the skills it will need post-fledge. We will focus on week two in this blog. In their second week of development, the eaglets will gain roughly two pounds, experience rapid growth in
We’re writing a series of blogs about the first few weeks of an eaglet’s life. An eaglet spends roughly 75 to 80 days in the nest. For about the first half, it grows and gains weight. For about the second half, it grows flight feathers and starts developing the skills it will need post-fledge. We will focus on week one in this blog. What can we expect in the first week following hatching? Like humans, growing eaglets have developmental milestones.
How do we know that falcon Zooey is two years old? Peregrine falcons have two distinct age-related plumages: juvenile and adult. Juvenile falcons have heavily barred underparts and brownish topsides (“brown birds”), mature falcons have pale undersides with black-barred bellies and blue/slate topsides (“blue meanies”), and two-year-old falcons like Zooey have a mix of adult and juvenile feathers. I love this stage! Tail Feathers (Retrices) Like all peregrine falcons, Zooey has twelve tailfeathers that are numbered one to six from
We are on hatch watch at Decorah North! While both eaglets still have open body cavities, most of their major morphological changes are done. At this point: Their eyelids still need to close all the way. Their eyes are growing into their sockets, more or less. Eaglets often have big bulgy ‘blueberry eyes’ when they hatch. Their eyes settle into their sockets during the first few days after hatch. Natal down is growing from feather germs. The chicks are squirming
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It’s NestFlix for Breakfish! In Decorah, DNF’s morning repast is interrupted by a juvenile eagle. Could it be DN13 or DN14? We have more information about that in the round-up! I’m sure that a lot of us swooned over close-ups of Mr. North, but I also enjoyed seeing the nest taking shape in Mr. North’s breakfish video. Eagles are early risers, so if you want to see live nestorations this time of the year, you’ll need to tune in at
Happy Fri-yay! Kick your feet up, grab the popcorn, and join us for movie night: we’ve got Nestflix from Decorah, Decorah North, and the Flyway! In Decorah, Mom graces us with an appearance on the maple. The Decorah North eagles are coping with guests on the North Super Flyway, including a lovely and very plucky subadult. Don’t miss the three-way eagle interaction! The adult-to-adult dinner confrontation could have saved the very hungry subadult’s life, since it stole the dinner prize
Welcome back, everyone! It’s great to see Mr. North and DNF again and we’re getting tantalizing views of Mom on the maple and bluff up above the hatchery! We’re still not sure where the Decorah Eagles are going to nest this year, but we’ll be watching all three nests (N1, N2B, and N3) and hope to have a boots-on-the-ground report within the next week. Can we remove the dead tree that Mom and DM2 are nesting in right now? Removing
Welcome back, everyone! The Decorah and Decorah North eagles are coming back on Saturday, October 9, at 12:00 nest time (CT). Our Decorah moderators are celebrating with a ‘Welcome Back’ Chat from noon to 3PM CT. Watch and chat or perch here: https://www.raptorresource.org/birdcams/decorah-eagles/. Our Decorah North moderators are celebrating with a special chat beginning at noon. Watch and chat or perch here: https://www.raptorresource.org/birdcams/decorah-north-nest/. Do you hang out at Explore.org? You can watch the Decorah Eagles here: https://explore.org/livecams/raptor-resource-project/decorah-eagles and the Decorah
More pics from the field! We finished cam work in Decorah on September 27th. Overall, we installed five cameras (two at the north nest and three at a new nest) and two microphones, cleaned eleven cameras, trimmed trees, measured the North nest and our new nest, took some unused equipment down, and built a starter nest at N1. We are turning the streams back on Saturday, October 9, at noon nest time (central) and our wonderful volunteers are planning a
Eaglets and Outcomes: Detailed Annual Information
We often get questions about where the eaglets go after they disperse. We have never tracked eaglets from this nest, but we have tracked eaglets from the Decorah nest. For more information, visit our eagle maps.