Monday, April 09, 2018

The Race and the Bald Eagles Nest

The first salwart male Robin arrived a few weeks ago even though the temperature the other night was only 10F and we've had snow besides.  They come early to secure the best nest sites and so far I've never seen them succumb to the weather.  No worms yet as the ground is too hard but they dig around in the ground debris and find something and don't appear to be the worse for wear.

Today I'm down by the Race just outside of Brodhead looking to see if the Bald Eagles or Red-tails are hunting in a conservation area that at times is almost a marsh.
No raptors.  I head for higher ground.
This is the Race and believe it or not this is man made.  Back in the 1850's the town of Brodhead which previously had been a very small town with a general store, and whatever amenities it took to service a few townies and the surrounding farm folk found it was in the running for a train station.  Wowee!

Well if they were going to get that train they'd better have something more going for them.  They decided they needed a mill.  And a mill could be run by water.  But not the well water they had been using.  Rather they needed running water to turn a water wheel for power.  They decided to dig a race  from the Sugar River which was miles and miles away.

Okay, yes there were steam powered shovels back then but as it turned out, numerous portions of the race had to be dug by hand.  Yup, actual guys with hand shovels, dug parts of the Race.  The mind reels.

At this point I am attacked by a Blue Jay who is positive I should go home.

Sorry no pix.  It's very hard to get a decent picture of something that is hell bent on pecking your head.

Though the Mourning Dove did stay around as a spectator.
Wait!  Big wings!  No not an Eagle or a Red-tail but rather a Turkey Vulture.  Suddenly I hear the clomp of horse hooves.  WHAT?

Just one of the Amish folk who live on a farm not far from town, likely coming back from the Piggley Wiggley with something they discovered they lacked for making dinner.  It isn't as if one can grow nutmeg or alspice yourself around here. 

I walk further.

Though the reflection is very nice, nothing in  the way of raptors here either.  Time to head out to the eagles nest to see if they're around.

Turkey Vulture appears again.  You can't see his head as he has his head turned down looking at me.  I'm going.  I'm going.
I get in the car and drive.  On the way,
... a pair of  Mallards in a retention pond.  
The Eagle's nest.  No action I can see so far.  Let's try some computer magnification.

Look over the top of the nest on the left.  There appears to be a slightly whiter bit on the left of the bowl as well as on the right of the bowl of the nest.  Hmmm.  A head and a tail?  Two heads?  Or just the sky beyond with the contrast of the nest making those bits of sky seem whiter?  Let's look at the next shot.
The full shot.
Mutiple light spots above the next.  I'm thnking probably not.

Tomorrow is another day, and I'm thinking it should be used for another trip to the Eagle's Nest.

Donegal Browne