Guidelines and Mods | Pop Video | View Calendar | Donate | Shop 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.
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
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,
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We have your NestFlix from Decorah North and Great Spirit Bluff! I liked all of these videos, but I loved the North Nest bath time with both eagles – I’ve already got a number two favorite video this year! – and Mr. North’s tree trimming. If you want to see bald eagles, don’t miss the eagle icecapades at Great Spirit Bluff. How many eagles can you count? I counted well over twenty on the ice! Thank you so much to
We have your NestFlix! We aren’t seeing much of Mom or DM2 but, with only about a month until eggs, the North Eagles are extremely busy with nestorations! I really enjoyed the fish chase and the stunning looks at DNF, and I always like seeing coyotes out on Mississippi River ice. As always, thank you to our camera operators for finding such special moments, our video makers for sharing them, and you for watching, learning, and especially for caring. Have
We have your NestFlix! While we wait for John’s report from Decorah later this week, we’re watching the Decorah North Eagles, Great Spirit Bluff, and the Flyway. I liked all these videos, but do not miss the first two Decorah North videos (I love the birdsong and close-ups of DNF), the Great Horned Owls at GSB, and the Northern Harrier on the Flyway. I miss seeing Mom and DM2, but I love seeing the diversity of birds and wildlife at
What bird is this? It’s a Merlin! This surprise visitor delighted watchers at Decorah North yesterday by perching, eating, preening, and showing off its yoga skills before flying away. According to most sources, North America is home to five falcon species. From largest to smallest, they stack up like this: Gyrfalcon Peregrine Falcon Prairie Falcon Merlin American Kestrel Like Peregrine falcons, Merlins feed primarily on other birds that they catch in the air, although they will also eat mammals, insects,
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
Hatching DN11: March 30, 2020 @ 2:36 PM CDT DN12: March 31st, time as yet unknown. Confirmed at 8:23 AM CDT
DN11 died at 5:56 AM on April 10. It appeared to have an obstruction in its throat that it could not clear.
Eaglets and Outcomes
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.