On The Lookout Again

Apr 12, 2012 | 2 comments

Bird’s Eye View

     The bald eagle is back.  She perches in the Monterey Cypress on Merchant Street where she has a clear view of us, and we of her.  Lately, she has sometimes shared her perch with a young juvenile and that’s probably why I think of her as female, not male.  A mother teaching her young.  But it could be a father-and-son hunting duo.  Hard to tell with eagles.
     I’m not sure why we don’t see them during the winter..  Some eagles migrate in the cold months if their nearby body of water freezes over, but that’s hardly a problem here by Willapa Bay.  Nevertheless, we’ve not seen eagles on Merchant Street since early last fall.
     They showed up the same day we brought our baby chickens home from the Planter Box.  Go figure.  The peeps went from their box in the car (which we had driven into the garage) directly into their over-sized nursery box in our workroom.  They have yet to be introduced to the big outside world.  That won’t happen until they are fully fledged.
     So how do the eagles know?  Or do they?  Perhaps it’s just a coincidence that they’ve been on their Oysterville Lookout since the chickens arrived.  Or maybe they’ve been hearing those “Peep! Peep! Peep!” sounds coming from our house.
     An eagle’s sense of hearing is second only to its ability to see.  If, as they say, an eagle can spot a rabbit a mile away, does it follow that it can hear a baby chick just down the block?  It seems logical to me.
     Farmer Nyel has the chicken coop and its attendant run well reinforced.  And when the time comes, there will be no free-ranging if there are eagles in sight.  We’ll be on the lookout, so to speak, ourselves.


  1. Kathleen Shaw

    A friend forwarded the most amazing video of an eagle to me. It was shot near Baton Rouge, and it was of a bald eagle trying to lift a dead nutria from the surface of a lake. Now, I’ve seen them get large salmon from the Nisqually River, but for some reason this eagle could not get a good handle on the nutria. After many tries (“how long does this video run!”) the eagle finally lands on the water near the nutria, hops up onto the nutria’s body to grab it, and then uses his/her wings to do a breaststroke to drag the nutria over to a small island! Bird brains indeed. The brain of a bird may be small, but consider it in ratio to the size of the bird. Bet your chickens are smarter than many think.

  2. Stephanie Frieze

    It would be highly insulting if an eagle carried away a peeper, but it’s nice that you are privy to so much of nature in your neck of the woods.


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