Date: 1/23/19 7:02 am From: Tim Holland <timothyholland...> Subject: [VTBIRD] Three (4?) Bald Eagles and GBBG harassing Mergansers: downtown Burlington
This morning while on Burlington waterfront bike path (near that exercise equipment that's about a quarter mile north of the coast guard station), I saw three adult Bald Eagles flying north following the shoreline. They continued north as far as I could see (past North Beach). Flying one after the other, but well spread out (probably 20-30 seconds between each one).
When I arrived at the waterfront, I saw a Great Black-backed Gull repeatedly diving into a loose raft of about 80 Common Mergansers (and one Common Goldeneye), causing several ducks to scatter each time. I wondered if it was the behavior described in here - https://www.audubon.org/news/are-gulls-jerks - of gulls waiting for diving ducks to bring food up from underwater and then attacking them to steal it.
While I was watching the Mergansers, an adult Bald Eagle flew over the coast guard station coming from the north (it may have been one of the first 3 I saw, but I have no way to know). It flew low along almost the entire length of the outer breakwater until eventually landing on the ice just northeast of the lighthouse at the southern end of the breakwater. It was there when I left, but that was about 30 minutes ago.