Adult Bald Eagle # 23 April 6,2007


Our faithful eagle watcher Ritchey Elliott has spotted another patagial color marked bald eagle. This one is an adult. His previous observations were on Number 46 -- remember Stephen!

So lets hear the life story on this bird. Has he, and I suspect this is a male, also got what appears to be an aluminum band on his right leg and a orange ring on the left leg.

The new bird was apparently only at the Vancouver City Refuse center for a day. Ritchey called early in the morning and I was just about to go out to Mission with Karen to take all the images we have had printed for the start of Grand Chief Dr Rose Charlie's school tour on Tuesday when I got the call. I met Ritchey there and within minutes we had #23 under scope. We were a long way off but some of my shots do show the #23 quite clearly when blown up.

So what is this birds history? Was he banded as a juvenile? The band does seem a little faded but it would be surprising to have the band survive this long. How exciting if it did.

Ritchey called me today to say the bird was not detected. So where is it gone?

Comments on the Refuse Dump Eagle Population April 6, 2007. I, even in my rush, counted 286 bald eagle: 172 juveniles and 114 adults. The adults included a great many 5 and 6 yeaer old birds with traces of black in the tail and head.

Normally by late February and early March the dump eagles have departed. By the end of March I am usually down to about 8 16 birds. This year the numbers and the distribution are so erratic. I suspect it is all about our December floods that washed the fish carcasses out of all the souther BC rivers. With no easy food for the next 3 months the birds moved off in search of greener pastures. I am sure that the 'high' numbers of birds so many have reported this year is simply that the 10,000 eagles of southern BC and perhaps another 40,000 pairs so from up the coast simply went looking for food.

One of our Kansas observers, who usually sees 3 -5 eagles on her enpoundment along the Mississippi River, this year had nearly 300 eagles show up. Every where the numbers seem up -- except along are rivers where the 10's of thousands were largely gone.

Throughout the lower mainland this year we have groups of 5 to 40 sitting around hopeful food sources. They should have gone north during late February and March to feast on herring and oolachin. It appears that many eagles may have so altered their winter movements that they simply have not yet got back into the normal rhythm. I had nearly 40 eagles in one field in Delta BC last week. And as some of you may have followed, Ell and Harry had a "swarm" working the herring spawn in Pat Bay beside our Sidney nest.

I look forward to hearing where #23 lives? Or at least when and where it was tagged.


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Saturday, April 07 2007 @ 04:37 PM EDT
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The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, October 25 2009 @ 04:42 AM EDT DSC_6327.JPG-23-sitting-best-WEB-CU.jpg

I believe this article on flicker is reffering to the same eagle.


More info:
From: "Jennifer Bohannon" (WA Dept of Fish & Wildlife)
"Turns out that this tagged eagle came out of a program to restore bald eagles to Santa
Catalina Island (CA). I emailed Dr. Peter Sharpe with the Institute for Wildlife Studies and was told that he was hatched from captive birds at the San Francisco Zoo in 2002 and fostered into a nest on the island in 2002. He left the island in fall 2003 and has since been reported at the Lewiston Fish Hatchery in N. CA (1/15/03), with another adult in Genoa, NV (5/17/06), and at Crescent Beach, B.C. (4/21/07). "

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