Edmonds Eagles 2018-2020

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Bill Anderson

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Staff member
Form Pt. Edwards we drove down to the marsh. After we were there a few minutes, all the herons took off in what I call a "heron tornado", which usually signals the approach of an eagle.

Sure enough, one of the Pt. Edward adults flew in and landed in a tree above Willow Creek on the south side of the marsh.

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The adult stayed there a few minutes, then flew over to a pole beside the railroad tracks.

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Adult eagles usually ignore harassment by crows and gulls, but this adult seem bother by the gulls. I this heightened sensitivity is caused by the presence of the eaglets.

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I knew Amtrak's Seattle-Chicago Empire Builder was scheduled to arrive at any minute.

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Bill Anderson

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I assumed the train might scare the eagle into flying away, so I set up for the shots.

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The eagle flew to another tree beside the creek where it continued to screech at the offending gulls.

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The eagle reminded me of a cat hissing at something it does not like.

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Bill Anderson

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My son and I drove back up to Pt. Edwards after the adult took off. One of the juvies was perched in a tree behind the houses.

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The other juvie was perched in the family tree. It reminded me of a prince or princess laying claim to the throne.

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Bill Anderson

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Saturday afternoon (8-24-19) my son and I went back to check on the eagles. I never saw the juvies although I heard one or both of them squawking in the distance. One of the adults was perched in the sentry tree.

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Some high flying raptor drama occurred when a passing osprey began flying laps around the eagle.

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The eagle did not like the intrusion into its air space and sounded the alarm.

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This did not intimidate the osprey, which continued flying around the tree. The osprey looked like a female from the dark feathered "necklace" around her neck.

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Bill Anderson

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The osprey spotted the other adult eagle perched on the family tree down the street and flew off to harass it as well. I had been using the 1Dx + 100-400L II telephoto zoom to track the osprey in flight.

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The osprey made several passes at the eagle before flying back towards the Sound. This gave me time to reposition the 5DIII + 500L telephoto + 2x III teleconverter which had been trained on the eagle perched in the sentry tree.

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I have seen eagles chasing osprey in attempts to steal their fish, but I have never seen an osprey harassing an eagle. To my knowledge there are no osprey nests nearby.
 
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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
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We are into September and the Pt. Edwards eagles have still not left for their annual two month journey to salmon spawning rivers. I assume the adults will not leave until they are convinced the babies, which have fledged, can look after themselves.

Labor Day afternoon (9-2-19) my son Daren and I drove up to Pt. Edwards to check on them. We did not see either of the babies, but an adult was perched in the family tree at the top of Pine St. above the parking lot of the new condos.

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We came back shortly before sunset and found one of the babies in the nest where it would occasionally squawk.

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View from the backside of the nest.

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I heard another baby squawking from the direction of Puget Sound. I assumed it was the sibling, but the sibling was perched on the family tree where Daren had earlier photographed one of its parents. The squawking I heard could have the baby of other eagles in the area, such as the Deer Creek pair.

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One of the parents was perched in another tree on Pine St. down the hill from the family tree.

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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
Going back through old photos, I found that I have been photographing our local eagles since 2008. This begged the question, how long do bald eagles live? I looked it up on the website of the Cornell Institute of Ornithology.
https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Bald_Eagle
From the website:
Bald Eagles can live a long time. The oldest recorded bird in the wild was at least 38 years old when it was hit and killed by a car in New York in 2015. It had been banded in the same state in 1977.
 
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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
I have been making daily checks of the Pt. Edwards eagles to see how long they stick around before leaving on their annual journey to salmon spawning rivers. Don't worry, the adult always return by Columbus Day at the latest.
One adult may have already taken off, as I have not seen the two together for the past few days. My son Daren took these photos Tuesday (9-3-19) of one grooming itself on the family tree at the top of Pine St.

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It is so convenient to have Daren take photos from the passenger side while I am driving.

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Wednesday afternoon one (the same?) eagle was perched on the tree off Pine St. down the hill from the new condos. I did not stop for photos as we had taken some from the same location Monday.
 
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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
As I have written before, our local eagles usually leave Edmonds around the first of August and return in early-mid October, which prompts me to start a new eagle thread. I am still seeing at least one adult eagle perched on the family tree at the top of Pine St. I don't know why it has not left, but it might be related to the pair having two babies this year. Photos taken Thursday (9-26-19) afternoon.

From the marsh.
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From Chinook Rd. The eagle was screeching as we drove past. It stopped before we turned around so my son could take photos from the pickup.

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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
Since I am only on page 4 of this thread, I think I will just continue with it and not start a new one for 2019-20.
 

Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
Both of the Pt. Edwards eagles are back. I saw one bringing a branch to the nest just as I pulled up. I did get a shot of both eagles together at the nest.

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I returned to the nest from the marsh just as one of the eagles took off from the family tree above the new condos at the top of Pine St. I set up just in case it returned.

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A juvie that looked like a 2019 hatchling flew by. One of their offspring returning to the area?

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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
A friend of mine told me that the Pt. Edwards eagles have two babies in their nest. In a nice break from backyard birding, Monday afternoon (5-18-2020) my wife drove my son and me up to check it out.

I saw what looked like the rump of one eaglet poke up. I had only the 1DxII + 100-400 II telephoto zoom with me, so the shots were not closeups.
This shot is highly cropped, but you can see the baby is still in its downy stage.

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Given the shooting angle, we cannot get really good shots of the eaglets until they have lost nearly all their down.

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One of the parents was perched nearby in the sentry tree.

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Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
I definitely see some fuzz, Bill. Glad you got out!!
We drove past your house on the way and it looked like you were out, too. ;)
Now that we know there is at least one eaglet in the nest, drag out your face mask + 500L telephoto lens and take some photos. 🦅
 

Bill Anderson

Super Moderator
Staff member
Daren and I will try to make it up there with the big lens this week if I am feeling up to it. Sunlight doesn't shine on the nest until the late afternoon.
We will be wearing masks, of course.
 

Terry O

Well-Known Member
Let me know what when you do. I would love to join you. With Mask!
 
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