Eagle Watch has gone out with a whimper, not a bang. When I arrived for the 9:30 feeding I confirmed a count of 16 eagles in the trees. Over the next half hour to forty-five minutes that grew to 32, but there were very few flybys and even the ravens didn't land on the field among the chicken.
We were treated to a decent exhibition of riding thermals as up to 20 eagles soared around over the northwest corner of the field, but that was it. At 10:30 I left for a coffee.
I returned at 11:30 and still no action had occurred. That put paid to the 11:30 feeding. I went home and returned at 1:30 to see the chicken still in the field and the number of eagles reduced. There were a few people still there out of the half dozen who came today, at least two from metro so I felt sorry for them.
I came back again at about three o'clock. The spectators had quit but most of the chicken was gone and one large adult was finishing off her meal. I counted about 15 in all, so perhaps 20 may have been involved. Most of the eagles were roosting in the northeast corner so I took the remaining chicken and threw it over the slope down in front of them; only a half bucket remained and as I drove up the road two of the eagles had come down already.
There was no siting of Redneck today.
So this is it for the official eagle watch until December. I'll check the field at 9:30 each morning next week and if there are enough eagles around I'll throw out a couple of buckets of chicken. If you're local you might want to drop by but those contemplating coming from further afield would do well to have a plan B in case the eagles don't show up.
This is my final blog until winter comes again. I am sad to end it this year and will miss the comfort of the routine I have established. I will certainly miss meeting the people that come from distant places - I always marvel at how far the word of eagle watch has spread. Mostly I'll miss the regulars with whom I have built a friendship. You have been kind and generous for which I am forever grateful. Thanks also to the farmers without whom we wouldn't have eagle watch at all.
Stay healthy and see you next winter!
Malcolm lives in Sheffield Mills and is our resident eagle feeder. He feeds the eagles daily and has a unique relationship with these large birds. These are his adventures!