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 Forum Index > H.W.F. Archives > Archive - Other North American Eagle Cams
 Davenport, Iowa/Alcoa cam - 2015/16
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By: JudyB (offline) on Tuesday, May 31 2016 @ 09:16 PM EDT  
JudyB

Thank you for the update, Mary. I haven't been following this nest - do you know if there is agreement as to whether the larger, probably female one is #1 or #2?

And I do have mixed feelings about transmitters - I really haven't had reason to wonder if they'd caused problems for the eagles on the Channel Islands or in Virginia (though I wonder about osprey who tend to take long flights over open water) - and it's great when we can follow one of our favorites for years, and maybe see him or her nest. love

But much as I recognize that we may learn a lot from Star and Sky, there's a part of me that would be quite happy assuming that they both lived happily every after, and perhaps someday being happily surprised when someone sees one of their bands on the Mom or Dad at a new nest with a cam.

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By: MaryF (offline) on Wednesday, June 01 2016 @ 12:12 AM EDT  
MaryF

Judy , I think they are waiting for bloodwork on the eagles to know the gender for sure but I think somebody at the nest said that they think the larger is a female.

I have mixed feelings on transmitters too. They have been very useful on the NBG eagles and I know they are going all out putting them on eaglets in Virginia this season. I'm really not sure why so many. Sometimes it's nice to know where they have been but I would rather not know if something happens. I like to believe in that Disney ending sometimes--especially if it is an eagle that "I know".



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By: MaryF (offline) on Friday, June 03 2016 @ 07:32 PM EDT  
MaryF

From Alcoa---info on the bands and transmitters -- June 2


Band Numbers & More

Over the next few days I will share some additional information and answers to some of your questions about the research project with the Alcoa EagleCam eaglets.

What are the numbers on the leg bands?

Star (female): 0709-04924

Sky (male): 0709-04920

What kind of transmitters are you using?

We use Cellular Tracking Technologies, GPS/GSM solar charging telemetry units. These units are state-of-the-art telemetry units, with a life expectancy of at least 3 years, though we have been tracking some individual eaglets for well over 5 years. These units only use internal antennas, which we feel is better for the birds. The units collect GPS data, tri-axial accelerometer data and information on the battery and solar panel. The GPS data include locations, ground speed, altitude, course over ground, and vertical and horizontal measurements of precision, along with information on battery voltage, charging, etc. The units are currently set to collect one location every 15-min and activity/inactivity between each GPS fix and to send data once a day via the cell phone network. If the units are out of cell phone coverage, they will store all of the data and transmit those data once they return to cell coverage. The units can be reprogrammed over the GSM (cell phone network). We can increase or decrease the time between GPS fixes, turn on/off the accelerometer, add a geofence, which, when crossed by the bird, can trigger the unit to automatically increase/decrease the number of GPS fixes. We can collect GPS data as frequently as 1 per second. Accelerometer data can be collected at rates of 100 Hz or more (100 per second), though 40 Hz is what we would typically use.

A little techie---but there it is! Puzzled




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By: MaryF (offline) on Saturday, June 04 2016 @ 12:28 AM EDT  
MaryF

More from Alcoa ---

Friday, June 3, 2016

What Do They Measure?

Here are a couple more answers from Dr. Tricia Miller about the research work done earlier this week with the eagles. I have included a few photos as well.

Can you describe some of the measurements you took and what they tell you? Talons? Beak/nares? - We take 8 measurements on chicks. These are: weight, tarsus width side to side and front to back, hallux length, exposed culmen (beak from the cere to the tip), bill length (includes the cere), bill depth, and bill width. The combination of bill depth and tarsus width are useful in determining sex.

Star was bigger than Sky in all measurements. She weighed 4630 g (10.2 pounds). Sky weighed 3560 g (7.8 pounds).

Besides determining sex and lead poisoning…what else do you get from the blood samples? We use the blood for sex determination and test it for exposure to heavy metals. The test we use looks at lead, mercury, and selenium levels. We also check for the abundance of specific lead isotopes from which we can calculate lead isotope ratios.


Here is a newly attached band with a bootie on the eaglet foot.

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By: MaryF (offline) on Saturday, June 04 2016 @ 12:49 AM EDT  
MaryF

Three pictures from Alcoa showing some of the measurements that they took.

Measuring the talons

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Measuring the beak

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Not entirely sure what this measurement is--at first I thought it was the hallux but now I'm not positive.

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By: MaryF (offline) on Tuesday, June 14 2016 @ 01:17 PM EDT  
MaryF

More questions answered from Alcoa ----

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Answering Another Question

Here is another answer from Dr. Tricia Miller from West Virginia University to a question posted here.

How many nests have you been able to do multiple eaglets at the same time vs. only one eaglet?

Most bald eagle nests that we have visited have twins or triplets; rarely are there singlets. Out of 23 nests where we have put telemetry on nestling eagles, we have put units on more than one eaglet at 13 of them. Whether or not we put telemetry a chick depends on the age and condition of the chick, the study, and the location of the nest. For example, if we have a high risk nest near an airport or wind facility then we would telemeter all of the chicks. However, we have a limited number of telemetry units and we can increase our nest sample by visiting more nests and deploying only one per nest. Often though, there is a very limited period of time when eaglets are old enough to telemeter. So if we have many units to put out for a study then we may deploy more than one unit on per nest. Otherwise we would chose to visit as many as possible, deploying only one per nest. Regardless of the study, time frame, or location of the nest, we never put a unit on a chick that is too young or in poor condition



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By: MaryF (offline) on Tuesday, June 14 2016 @ 01:22 PM EDT  
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Some scaps I took on June 11th with no time to post them Roll eyes


The younger, full eaglet watching the older one eat while mom feaks her beak

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One full, warm eaglet

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They sure have a lot of white down showing around the transmitters---wonder who has been picking at them?

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By: MaryF (offline) on Tuesday, June 14 2016 @ 01:27 PM EDT  
MaryF

That is one huge crop!!!

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Wing stretch and check the nice crop on the older eaglet

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Two warm eaglets and I guess you could say the one on the right is "sticking" on the rails Grin

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