Nest Update May 8, 2013 - MNVicki’s Guest Blog

Hi fellow eagle watchers!

Wow! I have some big shoes to fill with my fellow mods, whose guest blogs you have already seen and were done wonderfully, and talon’s blogs which are an art form itself. So hopefully you will find my information just as useful and I lived up to the standards. 

If you have been watching you have seen the little grey bundles of love up by the rails this week. I just want to assure you that this is normal. I have watched many nests, watched every little grey bundle of love do this. I, like the rest of you the very 1st time they are up by the rails it causes me to catch my breath, to get the little flutter of panic, and yell at the screen to get away from the edge!!! Even though I know that the little ones are as safe as can be. What this raises is the question why? Why are they there? What are they doing? Do they have to be so close? Will mom and dad make them come back? 

First off let me assure you that they are safe. Remember the camera distorts what we are seeing. If we looked straight across the nest instead of looking down the little bundles of love heads would be the only thing we see. Popping up and down playing peek-a-boo over the top of the rails.  Also they are bottom heavy even with full crops. So their fuzzy little bottoms would keep them in. 

So, why are they doing this? They are strengthening their eyes looking out at the world. Learning to notice things. They are also imprinting. Imprinting is watching and learning the surroundings around the nest. Eagles also imprint with their parents since they are the 1st moving object they see. Now is the time they are learning what is in this big old area around this nest. The other reason you will see them by the rails is because they use it as protection. As they grow it is harder for the parent to be in the nest with them. With the coloring they are (the fuzzy grey) they blend into the sticks of the rails and it is harder for them to be seen by predators. 

All of these thing require the little bundles of love to be close to the rails and as much as we don’t like it and yell at them to “get back from the rails” it is an instinct for them to do this. Remember protection and learning. 

Who knows they could be looking at the branches and thinking this is the one I am going to perch on when I leave this nest. Or looking at the river thinking I can’t wait until I get big and catch my own fish or duck. 


If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to post them below or in the chat room.  Also, we'll be updating our official MN Bound LIVE Eagles Facebook Page regularly so you can follow along, like, or share with your friends.  We have several site moderators this year to help give optimal information to all that want to learn more about these magnificent birds.