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Conclusion: Season 2007/2008; Catalina, SC & Santa Rosa Islands Nests
Topic Started: Jul 27 2008, 04:54 PM (1,798 Views)
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Conclusion: All Eagles All The Time: Season 2007/2008.


So another Season ends with the successful fledgings at all the nests on Catalina Island and from the Hacking Tower on Santa Cruz Island.

We have followed the Eagles ... on Cam ... on the Pelican Harbor ... Seal Rocks ... Twin Rocks ... Two Harbours and West End Nests .....
From their early Nestorations .... through Bonding .... Eggs/Incubation .... Chicks .... Banding to Fledging.

We also included the Middle Ranch Nest ... Pinnacle Rock Nest and Rattlesnake Canyon Nest through links to the IWS Catalina Updates .... for this season. See the ... 2008 Another Historic Year? Catalina Island Nests: MR, PR & RC thread

Information on the two new nests that were discovered ... Sauces Nest .. the first all SC nest because both eagles were released on SC Island ... and ... Trap Canyon Nest on Santa Rosa Island ... together with info' on the Grassland Nest .. can be found on the Northern Channel Islands IWS Updates thread.

It has been a roller coaster of a ride ... with the trauma at the PH Nest ... but both eaglets survived and have successfully fledged ... the loss of the Grassland Nest and also Survivor from Northern California ... and the interesting events that were taking place at the WE Nest this year!

So here is a review ... in Alphabetical Order.

Find out all about the nests on the ... Meet the Adult Pairs thread

We wish ALL the Eagles ... Adults and Fledglings


Safe Journeys and God Speed




Thanks to Dr. Sharpe/Eagle Guy, Steffani/eaglegal and all the IWS Crew for their photos and videos used in this thread.
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Cueva Valdaz - Santa Cruz Island.



A-00/male and A-16/female were another potential nesting pair on the north side of Cruz.
.......................Posted Image.....Posted Image
.....................................A-00.................................... A-16

Because they had been together for over a year and were now both fully mature birds, the IWS Crew had high-hopes that they would be laying eggs this season.

The pair have chose a territory on the north side of Santa Cruz Island which is mostly roadless.
This meant that the IWS Crew would have a fair bit of hiking, which, at some points, seems to be uphill both ways to get down to the water (where the eagles spend the majority of their time, and where they would probably nest)

In March another eagle A-29 (a 4 y.o. male) was seen perched in a tree with A-16. A-00 was perched on the cliffs not far off.
After a few hours, A-00 flew to the tree, talons flared towards A-29, as he landed in the tree. After a while, A-29 flew off.
If A-00 and A-16 were defending a nest, more aggressive behavior toward A-29 would have been expected.

Although they searched constantly .... a nest was never found.

Hopefully next year these two will attempt to nest.


..........................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)
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Grassland Nest - Santa Cruz Island.


....................................Posted Image
.............. K-11 incubating, A-04 perched in bush in foreground


Hatch Dates: April 4/08 and April 5/08

Posted Image................... Posted Image
April 9/08 Both Chicks visible.............The Grassland Family

Posted Image.................... Posted Image
April 16/08 Dad feeding his two babies... The Grassland family


.....................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)


Dave, April 24 2008
10:42AM
We have some very sad and disappointing news this week.
The southside ‘Grassland’ nest has failed almost 2 weeks after hatching.

The Grassland adults appear to have abandoned the nest for unknown reasons. They were observed tending to the nest as usual last Monday, but were not on the nest the following Wednesday.
One chick is dead and the other is gone.
We can only speculate as to the cause, but may be due to territorial interactions with other eagles. Several other Bald Eagles have been observed in that area, and another adult with GPS telemetry spent several hours in the area during the estimated time of abandonment. Sad news, but these are wild birds doing their best in a natural system, so we’ve come to accept a level of ‘natural mortality’. Nonetheless, it’s very hard when every nest in this small island population is so important to us.


Worst news possible about this nest ....

Jessica May 8 2008
04:34PM
Hi there,

I apologize for not posting sooner, but the last few weeks have been a little emotional here on the Northern Channel Islands.

As reported in the last update, the grassland nest failed for unknown reasons.

Following the nest failure we noticed the GPS data on A-04 (the female of the grassland nest) indicated she was not moving. We hoped she had just dropped her transmitter, but I hiked to her last known GPS location and found her dead in the bottom of a ravine.

Based on the circumstances surrounding the nest failure and A-04’s death, we think she got in a fight with another eagle while defending her chicks, but sustained injuries which led to her death.
We will be sending her to a lab to be necropsied in the hopes the lab can determine a cause of death. It will be good to get some closure on the situation at the grassland nest as the whole experience has been pretty depressing for those of us working here.
In honor of A-04, here are some photos of her since she was just a chocolate brown juvie up until she was a mom of chicks of her own. I also include one of A-60, her sole offspring who is still wandering the Channel Islands.


For the Photos of Beautiful A-04 ... Click on Here


A-04 - Rainbow Bridge Link

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MR - Middle Ranch Nest - Catalina Island.



A-32 ... aka Lady in Blue because she is a banded SC eagle living on Catalina Island with K-93 ... returned to Middle Ranch in November/07
..............................................................Posted Image..........Posted Image

Around Nov 29/07 Dr Sharpe/Pete and Steffani went to the reservoir and built an eagles’ nest on a Pine tree for them.
Steff: "It’s a bit smaller than other eagles’ nests so K-93 and A-32 may have to add to it if they decide to use it. We’re really hoping that they do use it .. or build somewhere else .. since this tree is one of their favorite roosting spots, it’s very nicely sheltered, the tree is about 30ft away from the water and the view is amazing."

Posted Image Posted Image
......................................................................Man-made nest - pictures taken from the video.

It was decided to give them a hand because K-93 hasn’t been too successful building nests in the past and now they want to encourage them to breed because they have a good chance of hatching healthy chicks (they feed mostly on clean fish from the reservoir).
This would be one of the nests that they would leave to hatch naturally in the spring.

During Feb and early March the pair were monitored every day but they did not observe any obvious breeding behavior.
K-93 was seen one day carrying sticks to one of the pine trees where Dr Sharpe/Pete had built the artificial nest and later Steff monitored them for a couple of hours and watched A-32 eat a fish 30ft below the nest
Soon after K-93 flew into the nest with a stick. And later on both adults were on the nest making some restoration

Late March still no sign of breeding behaviour but they had been seen working on their nest and it was much bigger than what they started with
They still spent time together and vocalized to each other but nothing really new. The IWS were still hopeful though as they still had nearly 2 months to begin breeding, and since the female was only 4-years-old it’s common for younger eagles to lay eggs later in the season.

On the weekend of March 22nd/23rd ... again whilst being monitored ... something quite interesting happened.
Pete watched K-93 bring a food item to his nest and K-79 ... one of last years Two Harbors nest chicks - Luna ... snatched it from him and ate it right at the nest. When Steffani got to the location she saw K-93 and A-32 perched about 20ft away from the nest and K-79 was still sitting on their nest!

.............................................................Posted Image.......... Posted Image
........................................................... K-79/Luna on their nest............ What do we do now dear?

During the month of April the pair remained together but no sign of nesting behaviour observed and time was running out for the eggs to be laid.

So 2008 was not A-32 and K-93’s year to become parents. However their bond is strong and so we all have high hopes for next season.


...............................................................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)


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PH - Pelican Harbor - Santa Cruz Island.


This year started well. Two eggs were laid and successfully hatched so K-10 and K-26 had twins for the first time.
But on May 19th a sub-adult Bald Eagle attacked the two 7 weeks old chicks on their nest. Both survived their injuries and after treatment were placed in a Hacking Tower on SC rather than being replaced on the nest.
The adults had moved on from nesting duties.



Hatch Dates: April 1/08 and April 3/08 .... ^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...topic=2274&st=0 ^"^

Banded: June 8/08 .... Wingbing Number A-64/Male .... Unofficial Name: Spirit ...... ^"^ Banding^"^

Banded: July 14/08 .... Wingbling Number A-65/Male .... Unofficial Name: Skye ...... ^"^ Banding ^"^


Posted Image Posted Image

Fledge Dates: July1/08 (A-64) and July 17/08 (A-65) ...... ^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...post&p=15979096 ^"^
.....................................................................................
...... ^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...post&p=15997726 ^"^

Posted Image

A-65/Skye on July 21, 2008 after taking a flight over the canyon


Skye/A-65 found deceased August 8/08 ..... Skye's Rainbow Bridge link
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PR - Pinnacle Rock Nest - Catalina Island.


After the successful natural .. and historical .. hatchings in 2007, the eggs were again left on this nest ... and again we were delighted when 2 healthy chicks hatched naturally.


Hatch Dates: March 30 or 31/08 and April 1/08

Banded: May 26/08 .... Wingbing Numbers K- 70/Male and *K- 71/Female ..... ^"^ Banding ^"^

Posted Image


Fledge Dates: June 17/08 approx ..... Video by eaglegal: PR Eaglets - July 11/08
.................................................... ..... Video by eaglegal: K-70 & K-71 - July 20/08


* Found deceased on July 24/08 ..... K-71 - Rainbow Bridge Link

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RC - Rattlesnake Canyon Nest - Catalina Island .... Historic Year!


On February 11, 2008 Dr Sharpe saw the RC pair working on their nest and getting ready to breed this year for the first time ever.

Peter had found this large nest a while ago but wasn’t very sure what species used it. He didn’t know who started building it, probably K-80 began its construction years ago getting ready for when a female came along… and K-47 did!

This was wonderful and exiting news for the IWS because there was now a sixth active nest on Catalina and this is the only one sitting on a tree.


Posted Image
February 22/08 K-47's first egg ever!
Steff: "It is unusually early for a first time breeder, but she beat every female this season, which made it even more exciting."


Feb 23/08: No egg in the nest. The male was near the nest but left soon after Peter & Steff arrived with cam equip.

Feb 24/08: K-80 was incubating their second egg ....... Video by eaglegal: K-47 Incubating.

March 8/08: Steff reported: "I’m sorry to report that the Rattlesnake (RC) pair has lost their second egg.
On Saturday morning I checked their nest and there were no eagles around.
After an hour or so the female arrived to the nest but didn’t incubate; soon after she left.The male never showed up.
We’re thinking the male is not doing as much work as he should and while the female goes to the water to feed herself, the eggs are left unattended. Lone eggs are very susceptible to predation and there’re lots of ravens around.
It’s still early in the season so the good news is that this pair still has several weeks to lay more eggs and have another chance at breeding this year."

This however did not happen.

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Sauces Nest - Santa Cruz Island .... Historic Year!



At the end of the 2007 nesting season A-02/female and A-28/male were seen together.

This season they decided to get serious and the IWS Crew observed them working on a nest on the top of a Monterey Cypress on the western end of Santa Cruz island, several hundred meters inland from the coast.

The tree they chose is approximately 40 feet tall, with 3 large trunks that start from a fork about 6 feet from the ground. All in all, it looks like an excellent choice of tree to support a nest that could grow to weigh several hundred pounds and, fortunately, it was also in a spot that would allow them to observe it from above, so close tabs could be kept on them throughout the nesting process.


.............................Posted Image
....................................................................A-02 and A-28 in the nest on the West End

(This nest may have also been called the Cypress Nest .. because it's in a cypress tree in Sauces canyon, so the two IWS Crews may have called it both names in their updates).

During March both adults continued to work on their nest and on March 10, it was observed that one of the birds was incubating!
This is the first all Santa Cruz Island eagle nest (both eagles were released on Santa Cruz Island) so everyone was so excited to see these two nesting!

......................................................Posted Image........ Posted Image
...................................................................A-02 incubating and rolling the egg(s)


On the April 3rd Update we were informed that the nest had failed. It is uncertain why ... but the adults had left the nest.
This was also their first attempt and as we have been told it is not uncommon for younger birds to have trouble hatching eggs in their first season.
Hopefully next year these two will attempt to nest again with better success.

Late June found the adults hanging out at Christy Beach. (Too far away for photos of the adults).

......................................................Posted Image........ Posted Image
...........................................Here is the cliff and the beach where A-02 and A-28 like to hang out.


.......................................................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)
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SR - Seal Rocks Nest - Catalina Island.


After the successful natural .. and historical .. hatchings in 2007, the 2 eggs laid this season were again left on this nest.
One egg was lost .. but we were delighted when a healthy chick hatched naturally from the remaining egg.


Hatch Date: April 5/08 ....... ^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...topic=2302&st=0 ^"^


Banded: May 27/08 .... Wingbing Number K-62/Male .... Unofficial Name: Gulliver ...... ^"^ Banding^"^


............................................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...0#entry15927811 ^"^


.........................................Posted Image


Fledge Date: June 26th or 27th/08
..... Video by eaglegal: K-62 - July 4/08


.................................Posted Image.......Posted Image........Posted Image
........................................................................ K-62 aka Gulliver after fledging

.......................................................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)
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TC - Trap Canyon Nest - Santa Rosa Island .... Historic Year!


................................The first nest on Santa Rosa Island - Exciting!

A-08/male and A-22/female settled into either a historical bald eagle nest or a golden eagle nest, or they did a lot of nest building, because the nest was huge!
It was also on a ledge with an overhang so it was impossible to see the eggs. But various observation locations were scoped out to at least confirm the adults were incubating.


......................................Posted Image....... Posted Image

During March and April the IWS Crew monitored the nest. Unable to see into the nest bowl they couldn't confirm how many eggs had been laid.
The adults are a young pair so they said "they would be happy to see one chick in the nest, but you won’t hear us complain if we get more.

However on the April 24th Update we received the news that the nest had failed.
It did not appear that the eggs were going to hatch (they were well beyond the normal 35 days), and the adults have been observed spending several hours away from the nest (not normal behavior during incubation),

Jessica Dooley/IWS hiked as close as she could to the nest and saw there were still 2 intact eggs in the bowl. With the assistance of Mark Senning and Ed Smith of the National Park Service, Jessica was able to climb into the nest to recover the eggs before they were taken or destroyed by ravens or other nest predators.

She wanted to recover the eggs to determine the stage of development and to send the contents to a lab for contaminants analysis.
Back on Santa Cruz Island the eggs were opened up. There appeared to be no development at all in either egg, so these eggs were never going to hatch.
Perhaps the eggs were infertile or were not incubated well. They were sent to a lab for further analyses.


Posted Image


This was A-08 and A-22’s first nesting attempt and it’s not uncommon for younger birds to have trouble hatching eggs in their first season.
Hopefully next year these two will attempt to nest again with better success.

Before Jessica left Santa Rosa Island that day she visited one of their favorite foraging locations and spotted both eagles perched above the ocean.

......................Posted Image................................Posted Image
A08 + A22 perched on "Eagle Rock" on SRI.......... Close-up of A08 + A22


"We know their bond is strong, so we’re sure we’ll be seeing more from these two in the future."

.........................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)
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TR - Twin Rocks Nest - Catalina Island .... Historic Year!


A camera was placed on the TR Nest ... but the adults decided to move to another nest!

Because the Pinnacle Rock and Seal Rocks Nests were successful last season in hatching their eggs .. left in the nests for the first time .. the biologists had discussed leaving the Twin Rocks Nest eggs to hatch naturally this year. As their new nest was on a treacherous narrow ridge this was the deciding factor!
It took a while as no-one could see into the nest ... but eventually all of us were delighted to learn that 2 healthy chicks had hatched naturally on this nest too!


Hatch Dates: April 5/08 & ??/08

Banded: May 28/08 .... Wingbling Numbers K- 88/Male & K-89/Male ...... ^"^ Banding ^"^


Posted Image


Fledge Dates: July 2/08



K89 on a fish................... K88 watching K89 eat his fish....Both K88 & K89 eating ....One more of the ‘twins’

Posted Image...... Posted Image...... Posted Image......Posted Image
........................................................................... Twins after fledging


( Photos courtesy of Karen/SoCal Lady ... who also saw both TR eaglets soaring above their territory and disappearing into the hills ... on July 30/08)

..................................................................(Click on thumbnails to see full size)
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TH - Two Harbors Nest - Catalina Island.


This nest had their two eggs removed. One egg did not make it at the IWS facilities but the other egg did successfully hatch and the chick was returned to the nest.



Hatch Date: April 2/08 ...... :^: Hatch Day :^:


Fostering Date: April 8/08 ...... ^"^ Fostering Chick Back into the Nest^"^

.................................................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...post&p=15871967 ^"^


Banded: May 27/08 .... Wingbling Number K-83/ Female ...... Unofficial Name: Star ........ ^"^ Banding^"^

...................................................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...topic=2613&st=0 ^"^


....................................Posted Image


Fledge Date: June 21/08 @ 4:56p.m.
..... Video by eaglegal: Sightings of K-83 & K-70 on July 29th 2008

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WE - West End Nest - Catalina Island .... Historic Year!



This nest had two eggs removed. One egg did not make it at the IWS Facilities but the other egg did ... eventually ... successfully hatch.

The chick took 54 hours ... after it made a hole in the egg ... and needed the assistance of Dr Sharpe ... to hatch ... and after a few days this chick was returned to the nest.
However the adults had a surprise awaiting the biologists ... what the cam watchers had observed the day prior to the fostering of the chick.
Another egg had been laid and the chick had hatched naturally ... a first for this nest!



Hatch Dates: April 15/08 and April 18/08 ...... <::: Video by eaglegal: :^: Manual Hatching of the WE Chick:^:

.......................................................................................................................... :^: Hatch Day at IWS :^:

............................................................................................................................:^: Hatch Day on Nest:^:



Fostering Day: April 19/08 ....... ^"^ Part 1 - Fostering the Chick Back into the Nest ^"^

....................................................^"^ Part 2 - Fostering the Chick Back into the Nest ^"^

...................................................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...post&p=15882849 ^"^



Banded: June 11/08 .... Wingbling Numbers K-65/Female & K-67/Female ..... Unofficial Names: Miracle (K-65) and Surprise (K-67)

.......................................^"^ Banding - Part 1 ..........^"^ Banding - Part 2 ..........^"^Banding - Helmet Cam

..........................................................................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...topic=2724&st=0

........................... Posted Image



Fledge Date: July 11/08 .... Miracle was 1st ... Surprise was a 'Forced Fledge' due to plane near nest! ...

.........................^"^ http://z7.invisionfree.com/CHIL_EagleCAM/i...pic=2724&st=150
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