Eagle Update, September 12, 2014

As you know, both of our eagles were seen in the nest last night. It's a very exciting time as we continue preparations for the upcoming nesting season.

Update: our new camera is not quite ready for prime time. We have had some issues with it and are continuing to work with experts to fix them. We will post when it is ready for public viewing.We will be moving the approach cam next week; this includes installing a new camera and moving the view so that it is a little higher. We welcome you to the 2014-15 season. Thank you for watching and thank you for being part of an incredible opportunity!

Berry Eagle FAQs

Berry College Eagle PairGender: The male eagle is smaller and has a sleek white head. The female eagle is larger with a head of ruffled white feathers. We will not be able to determine the sex of the eaglet until it is an adult. 

Injury: The female eagle returned to the nest last fall with an injured left leg/foot. We do not know how it happened, but she seems to fare quite well.

Night light: Berry is pleased to provide live video feeds of the bald eagle nesting area. The nest camera uses an infrared light at night that is not visible to the eagles. It may look like you are seeing a light, but you are not. The tree looks completely dark at night.

Camera/Tech support: For more info about the type of camera and technical issues click on “nest cam information” beneath the live feed on the berry.edu/eaglecam page.

Sound: We hope to add sound to the camera once the eagles have ended the 2014 nesting season.

Names: Berry has chosen not to name the eagles because they are wild creatures and we do not want to personalize them. This year’s eaglet is B3 (Berry and the third eaglet we know of.) Last year’s chicks were B1 and B2.

Egg stats: The first egg was laid Jan. 14, the second was laid Jan. 17. The incubation period is 33-37 days. One egg hatched on Feb. 22 producing our eaglet, B3. But the other egg is not viable and is still in the nest.

Location: The nest is located 100 feet up in a large pine tree next to a large parking lot at the college’s Steven J. Cage Athletic and Recreation Center, home to sporting events, concerts and other activities. Apparently our eagles like to be part of the action!

Stadium: Before the eagles arrived, Berry College officials had planned to build a stadium in the area. Once the eagles arrived, the original stadium site was moved to the south. Berry obtained a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the new location and agreed to restrictions on construction that ensures the eagles are not disturbed during nesting season.  Their location will be carefully buffered by new and existing trees as designated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Diet: Our eagles enjoy eating fish, coot (waterfowl) and squirrel. The nest is conveniently located near the Oostanala River and Garden Lakes in Rome, Ga.

Parent duties: When one parent is not visible, it is hunting and perching in nearby trees to watch for intruders.

Two nests: A second bald eagle nest was discovered Feb. 17 in a remote gate restricted section of the campus that has no roads or power. We do not know if there are eggs, and because of inaccessibility, we will not install a nest cam. The remote location is a gated, restricted area.

Owl attack: The mother eagle was attacked Feb. 18 by a Great Horned Owl, but did not appear to be injured. The video was shown nationwide as she defended her unhatched eggs. Berry is home to many Great Horned Owls.

Temperature: Bald eagles survive in much colder places than Georgia such as Alaska. Our national bird is tough!

Help: If an eaglet falls out of the nest or any of the eagles become injured, college officials are required to contact authorities regarding the federal rules for handling bald eagles. No personnel are permitted in the restricted area during nesting season.

Eagle Etiquette (via the Decorah Eagles web site)

  • For those of you visiting nests, remember, bald eagles are protected by Federal law in the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and the Migratory Bird Protection Treaty. 
  • Don't honk, play loud music, shout or make any other loud noises.
  • Do not feed the eagles in any way. This includes leaving food on the ground. These birds are wild animals and should not become dependent on humans
  • Keep the area free from litter. Pick up after yourself and take your trash with you.
  • If an eagle is on the ground, do not approach it. Also, when it flies away, do not attempt to follow it.
  • Stay aware of your surroundings. If the eagle is near a road, check for traffic before moving. Your safety is important.
  • Take your binoculars and/or camera with you whenever visiting a nest. That equipment will afford you the best view.
  • If others are watching with you, demonstrate eagle friendly actions by your own behavior. Be courteous to both the humans and wildlife.