Date: 2/10/19 4:41 pm
From: Jim LeFevre <jimlef...> [wsbn] <wsbn-noreply...>
Subject: [wsbn] North Fork Valley Raptor Trip Day 2

Day 2 of our annual trip proved to be very different weather wise and bird wise. We saw fewer birds overall but added a couple species. Thanks to everyone who came out!
Totals were: 11 bald eagles, 13 golden eagles, 26 red-tailed hawks, 4 rough-legged hawks, 4 kestrels, 1 prairie falcon, 1 northern harrier, and 1 northern shrike.

As some of you know I monitor the nest sites of raptors in the valley, keeping track of who is using which nest and when incubation starts for each site. The majority of the nests belong to red-tails. Well, at three sites it appears the resident red-tail pair is going to have find new accommodations because their nests have been taken over by a different species. In the past this has meant great-horns occupying the nests. But this year is just .....strange to me. One long-established nest has been taken over by a pair of bald eagles (who, incidentally, began incubating today), another nest has been found with a pair of golden eagles present, on the nest and perched in the tree. A third nest I thought was going to taken over by bald’s, but today we observed a one year old golden standing in the nest. Why it would be on the nest is a little baffling to me.

I’m guessing eagles taking over the nests of other raptors is nothing new to the birding world but this is my first experience with it. And I am curious as to where the resident red-tails build their new nests!

Enjoying the mystery of nature!
Jim Le Fevre,
Paonia, Delta County

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