Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Bald Eagles Are Back!

Joyce Dopkeen/The New York Times

The eagles are causing a sensation at Croton-on-Hudson, New York.

IT looked as if paparazzi had descended on the Croton Dam Bridge. Clusters of photographers with tripods and telephoto lenses conferred excitedly when they got the subject in their sights. Dozens of others had binoculars and telescopes trained on their elusive prey.

The celebrities they were pursuing? Bald eagles, which were spotted on the ice of the partly frozen Hudson River and nestling in trees on the shoreline. It was all part of Eagle Fest, an event that has been held annually for the last five years to celebrate the return of the bald eagle to the lower Hudson Valley.

From South African Film maker Adam Weltz--

Bald Eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus

Kelly Sorenson/Contributed photo
Dr. Amy Wells of the Avian and Exotic Clinic of the Monterey Peninsula cares for a female bald eagle, 5M, Saturday. ( Kelly Sorenson )

Betty Jo of California discovered this story and wrote, " This article has a photo which shows how really huge that eagle is-"

First a little species recap-- As per the usual reverse sexual dimorphism, females are larger than males, and many are quite large, though they do vary greatly in size. Northern Bald Eagles of both sexes tend to be larger than their southern counterparts.

Wing span is up to 8 feet. Length is anywhere from 17 to 35 inches. (Think length of a yard stick and subtract an inch.) But it is the variation in weight that I found rather startling. The weight varies from 5.5 pounds to 14.5 pounds. Therefore some Balds weigh three times more than others. Our beloved Red-tails are usually only a couple of pounds.

Now on to the Mercury News Article--

Injured bald eagle recovering at SPCA wildlife center in Monterey

Santa Cruz Sentinel
Posted: 02/10/2009 04:55:21 PM PST

Contributed photo-- This bald eagle, found Feb. 1 near Fort Hunter Liggett entangled in a wire fence, is recouperating at the Monterey County SPCA. ( Monterey County SPCA )

An adult female bald eagle, found entangled in a wire fence Feb. 1 on Fort Hunter Liggett in Southern Monterey County is being treated by the SPCA for Monterey County's Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center.

The eagle, known as 5M, has deep wounds at the base of each of her wings from struggling with the fence. X-rays do not show broken bones, but her left wing is drooping.

The eagle's rehabilitation was released 15 years ago by the Ventana Wildlife Society as a young eaglet as part of a reintroduction effort.

Bald Eagle 5M was collected from a nest in the Tongass National Forest, near Juneau, Alaska, on July 22, 1993. She was 8 weeks old at the time. She was banded and given a radio transmitter on Aug. 1, 1993. Her first flight into the wild occurred 15 days later. She was part of a release of 12 eaglets that year.

Donegal Browne

1 comment:

Karen Anne said...

What astonishes me besides their size is how light they are. From that photo, the bird is as big or bigger than the womens' torsos, yet weighs probably one-tenth as much.