Minnesota DNR EagleCam will return after nest fall in early 2023Nov 17, 2023 09:35AM ● By Content Editor
Photo: MN DNR, female eagle during the February 2023 blizzard
From the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources - November 17, 2023
The webcam that brought you the popular EagleCam for ten seasons is still in place and will be broadcast again this year. Even though there is not a nest, the eagle pair still frequents the same territory. Since the nest fell, they have continued to be seen by photographers in the area as well as by DNR staff monitoring the camera. This year, we will keep the camera “touring” locations in the area where we’ve observed eagle activity or perching. We hope you will tune in to immerse yourself in eagle habitat and visit the other wildlife that utilize this natural area.
Last EagleCam season began as usual in November 2022. The same pair as the previous season were tending their nest. They laid two eggs in February. One of the eggs broke shortly thereafter. They continued to incubate the remaining egg through spring snowstorms and endured intense Minnesota spring weather. On April 1, 2023, almost a foot of heavy, wet snow fell. The branch that had held the nest for 20 years finally gave way and the nest fell in the morning of April 2. Staff immediately went to the site and found that the one-week-old chick did not survive the fall.
Whether live or on the YouTube recording, watching the nest fall was difficult for many. In the vicinity of our webcam’s featured nest, there were three other eagle nests that fell that day, as well as many trees. The viral image of the incubating, snow-covered female illustrates the unpredictability of Minnesota's weather, but eagles are resilient and the pair were spotted in the area many times during the subsequent months. This is normal, as eagles are very loyal to their territory.
A new nest will be broadcast in the future. Thank you to everyone who sent in suggestions, we have two potential locations chosen. It is a challenge to install a camera at an eagle's nest but, thankfully, Minnesota has the largest population of bald eagles in the lower 48 states, so there is no shortage! We are dedicated to installing the camera at a new eagle nest by next season to share and we thank you for your patience as we work out the complexities of camera installation. Stay tuned for more information as our efforts progress!