I took a drive today from Yorkville to Montgomery along the Fox River and wound up watching people watching eagles.
Before the rains came and a bit of a thaw and the river came up, I took this same drive earlier in the week by chance due to a closed road. The river was pretty well frozen over and in one stretch where warmer water enters the river I saw eagles. I stopped counting them when I got to 30. I called Larry Granat to give him this information knowing that he wouldn’t sit on it. I knew he would have to get out and go look. He wound up counting 52 of them.
I guess I should mention they were all in a stretch less than a mile long.
Today I saw more people out watching the eagles then I saw eagles.
I almost stopped to take a picture of the people taking pictures of the eagles. Some were taking this quite seriously with their tripods and cameras with long lenses. Definitely needed the long lenses, almost all of the eagles were on the opposite side of the river.
I almost stopped to tell the photographers… you know, there’s a way to the other side of the river.
But I decided against that. Give the eagles a break and my way to those areas on the other side of the river aren’t really all that safe for the not so sure footed. Lord knows I’ve damn near killed myself enough times over there.
Best to leave well enough alone, even though, I have a feeling I’m going to get a phone call from Larry.
I did see 15 eagles. Far fewer then the other day, but the river had opened up with much more flowing water and less ice.
I was wondering about this. Where do the eagles go when the river opens up again? How many eagles are there in the Fox Valley? How does the Fox Valley compare to the usual eagle watching hot spots in Illinois?
Like reading my mind, Larry Granat, who also runs The Kendall County Bird Page on Facebook, put this up today:
As much as I’ve despised this cold winter and the intense cold spells we’ve been having, I guess I could put up with one more cold spell as long as it locks up the river again with ice.
I want to see that concentration of eagles again in that one mile stretch.
Photo of the eagle at the top of this page courtesy of Larry Granat.