Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Eagles have returned!

Bald Eagle nest at Shippingport Island

Last spring, Tom & Colleen Becker, local birding enthusiasts, discovered a pair of Bald Eagles were nesting in the Great Blue Heron Rookery on Shippingport Island. (Shippingport Island is where the McAlpine Locks are located). While it turned out to be unsuccessful, it was the first time in many years that Bald Eagles had attempted to nest in Jefferson County, Ky. Needless to say it was a very exciting event in Louisville!

Bald Eagle on nest at Shippingport Island

Many of us in the birding community have had our fingers crossed for their return this year.

Bald Eagle on nest at Shippingport Island

On March 6, 2011, my husband and I stopped by the Clark Cabin site at Falls of the Ohio to check the nest. (Clark Cabin site will provide you with the best vantage point to see the Eagle nest) Surprisingly, an Eagle was sitting on the nest! I immediately posted my findings to the listserves for both Kentucky and Indiana.
I know that Del Striegel, a local birder & volunteer at Falls of the Ohio, had checked on the nest approximately 10 days prior and saw no activity. So, we have to assume they returned and started sitting on the nest within that ten day span. According to the website, the incubation period for Bald Eagles is approximately 35 days. Let’s all continue to keep those fingers crossed, and maybe in a few weeks we’ll have Eaglets to blog about!!

Bald Eagle Flying on Shippingport Island
Just think, a little over a year ago, this blogger had never seen a Bald Eagle in the wild! Now, all I have to do is, go down to the river!


Anonymous said...

is shippingport island open to the public?

Karen Bonsell said...

Only part of Shippingport is open to the public. There is an area where you can watch the locks operate, and there is an area where people can fish in the Ohio River. I usually go to that parking lot. The Ospreys nest is in a tower just beyond the fence. I get a much better vantage point from there. The majority of the island is fenced off though.

Anonymous said...

My son and I just saw a bald eagle soaring about the Rolling Fields/Indian Hills neighborhood. We couldn't believe it until we read this link to see that they are indeed here. Beautiful.

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