Now is the time to check out Pools 7 and 8 for abundant eagles and Tundra Swans! Swans will leave just before the ice begins forming in the backwaters. Now that leaves are gone, the Bald eagles and their great nests are highly visible in the bare trees.
Getting quite a few questions on Eagles as November comes to a close. I do believe some of the Canada eagles are moving south, but weather is still mild on the Upper Mississippi River.
With Eagle viewing that is second only to Alaska, we can expect huge clusters, sometimes hundreds of birds in trees above open water… but they are widely dispersed until the river freezes.
Best eagle viewing begins AFTER the Tundra Swans leave, as they tend to leave just in front of the really freezing weather.
So stay in touch at www.greatriver.com and we’ll let you know as the season progresses.
Falling leaves this year have revealed more huge EAGLE NESTS along the Upper Mississippi River than I have ever seen! Between Winona and La Crosse, yesterday, we spotted 6-7 at regular intervals. This is a great time to spot the nest you want to watch for nesting activity early next spring. Some of the nests still had adult birds hanging about.
The seed islands north of Stoddard have been crowded this week with pelicans gathering for the trip south. With November just around the corner, and our first frosts already in the air, it’s time to start watching for Tundra Swans! I heard from Al Stankevitz that he has seen a very few towards the center of the pool at Brownsville, Mn. So be on the lookout for the long white necks of the Tundra Swans. In a few more weeks we should have many thousands!!
Just a reminder, too, that we have an extensive BIRDING section in the Mississippi River Home Page!
Please use the REPLY link to update our fellow birders on your observerations! This will be a spam-free way to keep one another posted on birding along the Mississippi River!!
Several people have suggested I post this Decorah, Iowa, Eagle Cam. Chicks have just hatched. Very up close and personal!
Bald Eagle Nest web cam
My husband woke me up early today to look at Eagles on the website, www.iwishicouldfly.com by Alan Stankevitz of La Crescent, Minnesota. Wonderful photography of not just eagles, but a long list of bird photos… including a very clear shot of a red-winged blackbird, wings folded, simply riding on the back of a redtailed hawk. His photos always include something a little unexpected! Alan is passionate about his art, but he is also generous about sharing tips on equipment and offers a journal with highlights from his bird shoots.
March 23, 08 and the American White Pelicans are back in Pool 8. Read our feature story on the return of the AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS to the Upper Mississippi River.
Also got a count for the March 08 eagle count from Wabasha. Note that Golden Eagles are included in the count! I, too, have seen Goldens, but they have been so few and far between we haven’t even mentioned them. I guess the word is now out! The bulletin board at www.greatriver.com/pbb/ shows a huge increase in eagle counts for Iowa.Eagles have been especially abundant on Pool 8 for the past two weeks as “winter” eagles wait for the waters further north to open and “summer” eagles start arriving for nesting. I counted 9 adults in two trees near open water on March 23.
Eagle Sightings Winter 2007-2008
The NEC’s 2008 Annual Golden Eagle Survey Count was on Jan. 19, 2008. The 2007 count was 41 golden eagles for the day and 51 for the week, up from 2006’s 23 for the day and 29 for the week.
2008 results are being tallied now!
Eagles Counted On or around March 14:
- Red Wing (Colville Park) 15
- Reads Landing 63
- Wabasha 24
- Alma 15
- Buffalo City 16
- Lock and Dam 5A 5
Some eagles are flying, however most are roosting.