Friday, April 20, 2012

Eagles and sheep

Bald eagle on the ground in my flock of sheep. 
 You're going to have to click on the picture to see it, but there' a bald eagle right in the middle of the picture, on the ground.  I saw the eagle fly by, see something, and the dive in.  I was horrified.  It landed right in the middle of my sheep flock, where I'd just moved them to rotate their grazing area.  I grabbed my camera and ran out towards the sheep. 
The eagles are fairly shy and this one flew off when I got a hundred yards away, but not before I saw it reaching down with its beak and grabbing something on the ground, several times.  It was eating something, and since my lambs are out there, I figured it was a lamb. 
 The lambs weigh about 20-25lbs at this point, but look bigger than they are because of their wool.  The adults are looking a little ragged because they're shedding.  I quickly counted my lambs and I wasn't missing any.  hmm..  I counted the adult sheep.  All there.  So I worked my way around to the part of the field where the eagle had landed, and found...
It looks like the eagle is picking up the wool that my sheep are shedding, a beakful at a time.  My sheep shed every year at this time, and there are patches of wool all over the place.  I could see a nest being pretty warm and comfortable when lined with wool. 

Now the eagle might have thought that there was a dead animal under the hair, but I definitely saw it picking up stuff from the ground.  It flew off an perched on a cell phone tower a half-mile away.  I'll have to look at it tomorrow to see if its building a nest there. 
Possible bald eagle nest location:  Cell phone tower

1 comment:

becky3086 said...

Wow! Look at the size of the eagle! No wonder you were worried about the lambs. It never occurred to me that an eagle could take a lamb.