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Florida

Hurricane Ian wipes out famous bald eagle nests, rebuilding birds

Fort Myers (AP)

The most devastating storm in Fort Myers history wiped out Harriet and M15’s primary nesting site. Harriet and her M15 are a famous North Fort Myers Eagle couple who live around the world during nesting season.

“Their nest was completely demolished during Ian. There were no poles left and many of the basic branches were broken,” said Virginia, whose family owns the land where the eagle nests. Pritchett McSpadden said, “I remember this wistful feeling that after the storm had passed, to our amazement, they were hurt, the trees were downed, and they weren’t coming back to the area. … Both eagles have been confirmed safe and are already about to bring in new sticks, which brought tears to my eyes and I know many others as well.

Nest loss in September is actually good timing for birds as they still have time to rebuild their nests and lay eggs this season.

Bald Eagle Nests Rebuilt in October in South Florida

October is typically nesting and repair time for bald eagles in South Florida.

It’s also the time of year when the Pritchett family turns on the Southwest Florida Eagle Camera. There are actually multiple cameras that show the nests and branches where the birds rest from different angles.

The footage is streamed online and reaches millions of viewers each year.

However, Hurricane Ian also damaged their camera system, so it may be a while before their daily lives are streamed again.

“October is basically when they come back from where they’ve been up north,” said retired biologist and planner Jim Beaver. , spent summers in the Chesapeake Bay and along the Atlantic coast.”

Bieber, who once tracked eagles in southwest Florida for the state, said Harriet and M15 should have plenty of time to nest this year.

“A pair of eagles can nest, nest and have offspring in one season,” Beaver said. “Sometimes it leaves the nest a little later, other times it doesn’t.”

One of the bonuses Bieber points out is that there are a lot of building materials scattered on the ground.

The bald eagle breaks into a stick shape and snaps into place.

Thankfully the main tree didn’t fall down during the storm. Alternatively, the famous eagle may have left the territory altogether.

“Losing a nest doesn’t change an eagle’s territory, but losing a tree does,” Beaver said.

The nesting cycle includes eggs laid by the end of the year. The chicks emerge quickly, and the fledging chicks leave the nest from April to June.

Bald eagles usually lay two eggs.

“Their survival instincts are very strong,” McSpadden said. “I am shocked, but not surprised by their effort and strength.

The camera will be offline for now, but the family would like to restore at least one camera soon.

“Unfortunately, after the storm, we’re having trouble restarting the live cameras, but we’re continuing to try a few different things in hopes of restoring at least one camera,” she said. Told. “We will continue to update her on her social media pages and website www.SWFLEagleCam.com.”

McSpadden said birds are symbols of power in times of need.

“At a time when we need hope, courage and strength more than ever, it’s incredible to have this iconic bird of prey in our backyard,” McSpadden said.

https://www.winknews.com/2022/10/23/hurricane-ian-wipes-out-nest-of-famed-bald-eagles-birds-rebuilding/ Hurricane Ian wipes out famous bald eagle nests, rebuilding birds

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