Over the years, I’ve posted a few articles about the magnificent eagles that reside near our Grand Marais home: Our Eagle Friends, Spring 2017, The Back Yard. As reported, we found their nest in our “back yard” while out snowshoeing during the winter of 2016. Sadly, a ferocious wind storm in the fall of 2018 knocked over the tree supporting their nest. Here’s what it looked like in May 2019 – I saw no sign of eagles on the day I took this photo.
Thinking about the birds returning in 2019 to find their home ruined made me very sad, but we still saw eagles flying back into the woods, making me wonder if they had built a new nest somewhere in the vicinity. Today, I trekked through the rough terrain to have a look at the old site again, just to satisfy my curiosity. As I drew near, I was surprised to hear the unmistakable screech of an eagle. Looking up, here is what I saw:
This bird was obviously telling me to get the heck away from there, presumably protecting some eggs in a nest. Would the eagles actually be reusing their old home again? That seemed unlikely to me, but certainly possible. After shooting the video, I hightailed it out of there, with the bird still following along, circling overhead and squawking until I was well away and clearly no longer a threat before flying back toward the old nest. It wasn’t until I got back home and watched the video that I noticed a new nest in a nearby tree. I’d been inadvertently standing a dozen feet away from the eagles’ new home! Here’s a still from the video:
It’s no wonder the bird was so agitated by my presence. I’ll need to go back and check it out again sometime, but I’ll be sure to stay far away from the new home site. I probably should wait until after nesting season is over, although it’s much harder to walk back in the woods later in the spring with all the vegetation springing to life. Maybe I’ll just wait until winter and go in with snowshoes again.
The US Endangered Species Act of 1973 is credited with saving many species from extinction, including the magnificent bald eagle, the proud symbol of our country. As I noted in a previous post, I am so thankful for the wise people who decided that these magnificent birds were worth saving. Now our so-called President and his wrecking crew of right-wing cabinet members is intent on gutting the Act at the urging of big business (https://www.npr.org/2019/08/12/750479370/).
As I also said previously, we are all diminished when we allow nature’s beautiful creatures to perish due to the constant pursuit of the almighty dollar and the cynical quest for votes. If you don’t already have enough reasons to vote for Joe Biden this November, here’s one more – do it to honor the eagles and to protect their endangered brethren from Donald Trump.