Sunday, March 27, 2011

Bald Eagles

This morning, a subadult (4 year old) Bald Eagle was sitting in the tallest tree on Sandy Hook, somewhere between Officer's Row and the Coast Guard Station. While it was feeding on a fish it had caught, it was mobbed by Fish Crows, Herring Gulls and an Osprey.

The eagle was clearly too close to the Osprey's nest on a nearby chimney.

The Osprey persuaded the eagle to leave the area. It flew south, and I decided not to add it to the count. It was probably a 'local' eagle from one of the nearby rivers. Eagle movements over the Hook tend to be irregular and nondirectional: some will be migrants, some will be local birds wandering.

This juvenile Bald Eagle was probably a migrant, although it didn't exactly fly over in a straight line either. In fact, it harassed that same Osprey, which was flying toward its nest with a fish. The Osprey dropped the fish and went after the eagle. The eagle flew up to the tip of the Hook, turned around, and later tried a second time. Sometimes, young Bald Eagles show some fear of water.

This Osprey will likely have more raptors flying over its nest this spring.

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