Barbara Walker of Pinellas Eagle Watch sent an interesting note about satellite tracking of Bald Eagles that have been trapped and fitted with transmitters in the Chesapeake Bay area. Among them is "Citrus," an eagle that returned to the Florida Gulf Coast last winter, wandered up north into Maine this August, and will probably start back south any day now. Eagles that nest at the southern tip of Florida generally do not migrate very far to the north, and in fact, many may just wander locally during the non-breeding season. "Our" Pembroke Pines eagles are located in between, so until we are able to track one of them, it will not be possible to know where they spend their summers.
I have been watching some of the tracking data for bald eagles. They were 'tagged' at Chesapeake Bay. About half of our population spends their winters there. There hasn't been an update on the eagle named Zephyrhills in awhile. It appears by his latest map that he is moving south! I'm also watching Citrus who is also a Florida eagle. Citrus hasn't moved south yet. This work is being done by the Center for Conservation Biology in Virginia. If you haven't seen that yet, it is pretty cool. Center for Conservation Biology
This is a wonderful resource to share with my students! Thanks! We start our research of Bald Eagles next week. We will be treated to a presentation by biologist Brian Mealey to get us started, then the kids will be divided into focus groups and research various aspects of Bald Eagles and their habitats. The kids are showing a great amount of interest in this project!
Golly, I thought for a moment that the tracking map showed that "Citrus" made TWO trips to the same location, on the very border between Maine and New Brunswick, Canada! My erroneous interpretation was due to the fact that the plotting of this eagle's route recycles continuously.
Just be patient in observing the tracking dates on the fully animated map, and "Citrus's" travels are dramatically displayed.
Let's all root for a safe return to the Florida Gulf Coast!