Date: 3/25/17 5:47 pm From: <cathie.murray...> Subject: [Maine-birds] Questions about an eagle's behavior with nesting material
This morning in Hallowell Mike and I saw an adult bald eagle loosening up dried grasses on the east shore (Chelsea) of the Kennebec River. It popped up a few times but the grasses were still anchored so it didn't fly away. A few more talon-poundings on different hummocks of grass and it managed to fly off with a large tuft. That all made sense. But then the eagle flew very low and slowly across the river, as though the grass was very heavy. It landed on a low tree branch on the west bank of the river and seemed to rest. Then it flew off medium-low downstream then slowly back upstream barely above the riverside trees, then downstream again. It seemed to rest elsewhere and then it came back again flying slowly and fairly low but gradually rising to the tree tops on higher land west of 201. To our eyes it seemed to be laboring. This is an area with at least one established nesting pair. Seems like grasses would be one of the last additions to a nest, so we're guessing the eagle is part of a mated pair with an established nest. Is this behavior to take a circuitous route to the nest? Or is this a new adult hoping to impress a mate? Or a sign of eagle ailment? Your thoughts?