Saturday, July 5, 2008

Day 179, Saturday, 7/5/08, Year Four Dancer & Daedee: Snow Falling on Eagles

Hello Eagle Friends,

I think this has been one of the best weather weeks we have had in almost a year. We had periods of brisk winds, while the temperatures dropped to the low 80s when I arrived in the valley late this afternoon.

I found no activity on nest 7.

I hiked out to nest 1 and found both 12 week old eaglets, Daniels Charlie, and D'ODEE Brian Michael sitting on the nest tree. Daniels was sitting on the north limb, and D'ODEE was on the west limb.

There were people hooting and yelling on the river. I wondered if they had gotten tangled in the Twin Tree that blocked the river and forced unwary canoeists into a dangerous current if they didn't jump off on the sandbar.

The twins became silent and both strained their necks to see what all the commotion was, then they looked back at me to compare "humans" I guess.

I could hear Cindy, the white-tailed deer crunching around me in the tall grasses.

The people on the river found their exit, and I knew this by watching the heads of the eaglets turn and follow them. These eagles miss nothing, absolutely nothing in their territory.

When the winds picked up again Daniels stood up on the north limb and opened his wings crying out to D'ODEE, almost like he was trying to show him how to leap into the winds.

D'ODEE answered, but just was not interested in leaving the nest tree yet. Still, Daniels encouraged him. He folded his wings back down staring across at D'ODEE, waiting for him to look his way, then he opened his wings again and called out.

Daniels moved down the north limb and jumped onto his fledging limb, an offshoot of the north limb and opened his wings again. This time, a strong wind came in and he barely had to jump at all--for the winds picked him up and took him to the south, and I watched him fly beyond the river bend.

I couldn't get any shots as the grasses were towering over me blocking 99% of my view.
D'ODEE only watched, not even crying out.

Just before the sun was about to set I heard Dancer nearing, and the distant cry of Daniels calling in his hunger cry. I looked up to see Dancer above me, circling, and checking on D'ODEE.

Both eaglets were crying out, and D'ODEE began to fluff up his feathers, and he was about to jump into the nest when Dancer flew by him.

I could see that Dancer had no food. He was just coming in checking out where everyone was. He most likely saw Daniels fly off, or heard him crying out. Dancer keeps a close eye all that is going on.

I hiked out and moved on to nest 2. The nest had a golden glow cascading across the well-used, and nibbled branches and boughs. I listened and searched for Terry Gail, but I didn't find her today.

At nest 6, Linda or Dick was on the nest and I could see he or she was tearing food off for Freedom or Soar.

At nest 5 I could hardly believe that the twins were still there. Maybe they will leave tomorrow?

At nest 3, Victory Bell was sitting above his nest. He made it to the perch above it and he looked so proud sitting up on it.

I could see one eaglet on nest 4, but only briefly.

There were several great snowy egrets fishing the shallow edges of the marsh as I drove back through on my way out. One was wading in water up to his neck, which surprised me as usually these white giants are no deeper than their knees--which is still a deep pond.

The deer were out everywhere, and I stopped to photograph about 8 of them in an open field but they were just to hard to see.

As I drove past the river between nest 5 and 6 I saw an eagle sitting on a bare branch over the river. He was so handsome.

I paused to watch a couple baby raccoons who were stumbling up and down the edge of a stream. I wondered where their mom was. They were hardly bigger than two hands high, but very thin and wobbly. I wondered if they didn't have distemper, or maybe their mom did and died.

They stood up and watched me, then jumped back in the tall grasses.

I took Em to the book store tonight and we got some good books to read. Then we came home and played board games, and cards.

It was a great day.

I'm looking forward to day 180.

See you on the journey--



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