Yukon North Of Ordinary

News archive for February 21, 2014

Eagle eye trained on those with eagle eyes

The eagle camera is up and running.

By Chuck Tobin on February 21, 2014 at 4:45 pm

photo

Photo by Vince Fedoroff

FIRING IT UP – Laura Carlson, of the Yukon Electrical Co. Ltd., turns on the popular eagle-cam at noon Thursday.

The eagle camera is up and running.

With signs of activity at the eagles’ nest overlooking the Millennium Trail along Robert Service Way, Yukon Electrical Co. Ltd. decided to fire up its eagle-cam.

“We want to catch some of the early, early activity,” Yukon Electrical spokeswoman Laura Carlson said Thursday.

Carlson said there’s been a bald eagle hanging about for the last month. It looks an awful lot like the male from the pair which raised three eaglets in the nest last summer – for the whole world to see.

“He’s been spotted sitting in the nest, he’s been spotted around the nest,” she said. “I spotted him sitting in a tree across the highway from the nest.

“That eagle has been hanging around since mid-January.”

Carlson said Yukon Electrical staff have been turning the camera on periodically in the last couple of weeks to take a peak, and they’ve seen talon tracks in the snow, and fresh twigs.

There were more than one million hits on the company’s eagle-cam site in its first season last year, she said.

The camera went live at noon Thursday, and will remain on into September.

Carlson said it was turned on May 9 last year and went until Sept. 9, when there was little activity in the nest.

“By the time we turned the camera off, they were gone for most of the time but they were still coming back, and Mom and Dad were still feeding them occasionally.”

Bird biologist Dave Mossop of Yukon College said the migratory patterns of bald eagles are influenced by a variety of factors.

One bald eagle they once fitted with a radio transmitter ended up flying down to Washington’s Olympic Peninsula.

If, however, there is a hearty source of food locally, even a local dump, some eagles will not migrate, he said.

Mossop said more and more eagles are spending their time in the North.

“So you never know how far that guy went,” he said of the eagle that’s been spotted around the nest. “He may not have gone that far.”

Bald eagles do mate for life, but unlike many types of waterfowl which remain wingmates all year long, once the nesting season is over, the male and female eagles don’t stay glued to each other, he said.

Mossop said they will come together for the mating season, and will come back to the same nest.

Generally speaking, the male will return to the nest first to defend it, he said.

Mossop said it does make sense that the eagle seen in and around the nest off Robert Service Way is the male from last year.

For four months last summer, the eagle-cam provided a glimpse into the life of the bald eagle, from the moment the chick’s head popped through the shell of the egg.

“In turning on the camera at this time we don’t expect a consistent amount of activity, but we are hopeful to be able to watch the pair prepare the nest for the upcoming season,” said Carlson.

She said there is no guarantee they will breed, but such is the way of wildlife.

Carlson said Yukon Electrical is expanding its eagle-cam program this year to provide educational and tourism opportunities.

It’s planning to host nest-side presentations, and make available packages for teachers to use in their classrooms, including a kids’ activity book for ages six to 11 and a 25-minute video with last season’s highlights.

CommentsAdd a comment

June Jackson

Feb 21, 2014 at 7:02 pm

I love the live cams… I watch the Eagles nest and also the Pandas.

However I would take a second to remind all those who are not computer savvy, that you are using your internet bandwith to look at this data. I heard (gossip..I do not know this person) that there was a woman who left her computer on 24/7 looking at the eagles nest for almost a month. Streaming this data resulted in a $3,000 bill in bandwidth over usage So.. don’t leave your computer open, on pages that are constantly downloading.

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