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Chehalis Flats Update

Wildlife News

Hancock here:  Attached is a Chehalis Flats image by Christian Sasse taken yesterday AM after the fog lifted and the fishermen passed by.  His big image showing part of the flats had just over 310 eagles on the ground and in the attached shot showing our tower, being used by two juveniles with just over 110 birds in the surrounding area, gives some indication that the eagles are already moving into the area.

Earlier I predicted that we would have the eagles likely arriving later than usual since there are good quantities of fish spawning on many of the northern BC and Alaskan rivers.  The long-time tradition is that the eagles stay feeding in the north until the fish are eaten or they are frozen under the ice.  Then the eagles come south.  On top of this of course are those eagles that have already in previous years learned that the Harrison-Chehalis area is a bonanza for much of the fall and winter and they come early.

Just over 60% of the eagles present are sub-adults which is a very high ratio.  However, when we reach 5000 to count the ratios will be more significant.  As one can see in Christian's attached image there are lots of fish scattered along the river banks and the main spawn has yet to happen.  I am looking forward to my trips with Jo and Rob (Fraser River Safari Tours ) in their boat for a closer look.  The first eagle tours begin on Nov. 16, the first day of the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival (FVBEF

Hope to see many of you at the FVBEF (see detail of activities at the above website) Nov 16 and 17 plus at the Sts'ailes Salmon Celebration, also held at Harrison Mills, on the following weekend: Saturday, Nov 23.  By the way Christian will be holding a photo exhibit of his "eagle prints" at Pretty Estates for a whole month.  Make sure you drop by and say hi to him.

For me one of the biggest pleasures this fall season will be seeing the eagles from  Betty Anne's new Bald Eagle Observatory -- located right on Pretty Estates just 100 meters from our -- her -- Harrison Mills Eagle cams.  Of course her tower is right on the edge of the Chehalis Flats looking out towards our tower with the two cams.   If you have not followed the Harrison Mills events take a look at the Chehalis Tower cams and click on Live Cameras and follow our "zoomers" who are constantly using the pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) function of the cams to find the nearby eagles.  Note in Christian's image that two juveniles are standing on the tower  -- our AXIS 35 X zoom can give an eyeball view at the range!  The Vivotek cam is 20 X zoom.

By the way I spoke with Ken earlier yesterday and he was on the way to the Pretty Estates Eagle Observatory.  We are trying to get live coverage of all the eagles and festival events taking place right at the Observatory.  We're trying!



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Houdini the Bald Eagle

Wildlife News

From our friends at MARS comes the video story of Houdini the bald eagle. ~~

For over three months MARS had been getting calls from people in Campbell River, concerned about a Bald Eagle hanging around a beach area and sitting very low in trees close to the road. The bird did not seem to care about the many people stopping to take photos. With a slightly drooping wing, she was still able to fly well enough to elude capture and several times a team from MARS would race down only to find she had vanished! So, she earned the name 'Houdini'. Finally on October 28th she was able to be caught. After an exam at Sunrise Veterinary Clinic, she was found to have an elbow infection and is on antibiotics for three weeks. She is strong and feisty and eating very well. We are hopeful for a full recovery. To be continued.....

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Eagle poaching: B.C. judge indicates he’ll declare mistrial in high-profile North Vancouver case of two men

Wildlife News

Eagle poaching: B.C. judge indicates he’ll declare mistrial in high-profile North Vancouver case of two men


FEB 3, 2005 - SURREY, B. C. - Conservation Officers Jack Evans (left) and Colin Copland hold up a mutilated eagle, with more on the table, found in North Vancouver. They ere photographed at the Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection office in Surrey. Twenty six dead eagles were found with their talons cut off.


A B.C. provincial court judge has indicated he will declare a mistrial in the eagle poaching case against two First Nations men.

Gary Abbott and Ralph Leon were among 11 men charged with a total of 105 offences related to the unlawful possession of dead wildlife, trafficking in dead wildlife and other related offences. The charges, laid in April 2006, came after a 15-month Conservation Officer Service investigation that began with the discovery of 50 dead eagles in North Vancouver.

Read the rest of the story and see additional photos here:


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David Hancock to Speak in Vancouver

Wildlife News

This Saturday, Nov. 2, Vancouver area residents will have a chance to see David Hancock give his PowerPoint presentation on the recovery of the bald eagle.  Although David has speaking tours internationally it's not that often that he is speaking to local group meetings in Vancouver that are open to the public. 

The Stanley Park Ecological Society is sponsoring David to appear at the West End Community Centre at 870 Denman St. in Vancouver - Saturday, Nov. 2 from 1:00 - 3:00 PM.

With the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival only 2 weeks away, David will also be talking about that and the great numbers of eagles that gather out on the Harrison/Chehalis River Estuary Flats at Harrison Mills, BC during the winter to feed on the salmon carcasses.  The record breaking number was 7,362 recorded on Dec. 18, 2010 making it the world's largest gathering of wintering bald eagles!!

Also we are happy to announce that the 2014 Hancock Wildlife Foundation eagle calendars have arrived and are ready for purchase.  We will also have those with us on Saturday along with David's books.  Hope to see you there.

Here's a link to the website of the Stanley Pk. Eco. Society with their announcement and more details:

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2013 Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival Program

Festivals and Fun

Hancock here:  The Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival is firing on 1000!

This week the eagle count was already over 500 birds and next week it would not surprise me to be pushing 1000 eagles -- all lined up on the Chehalis Flats.  Will we reach 10,000 again this year? Only time will tell.

Please book your schedule to join us at the Festival or on the following weeks -- I will be out with Jo-Anne and Rob on their wonderful warm and dry tour boat many times during the fall and winter -- and that is the best way to see the most birds.

Also check our our  Chehalis Tower cams:

The 2013 Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival program of events is now on line:

I have even written a few short items for this publication.

See you at Harrison Mills!

David Hancock


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