A 'hatch year' Golden Eagle captured, banded, and released on Monday November 10, 2008. Hatch year = a bird that was a nestling this spring/summer or has not reached it's first 'birth' day. This day also set the record for the number of Golden Eagles counted at the Cape May Hawk Watch Platform: 14. Scroll down to "A record day at Cape May Hawk Watch: Golden Eagles 11-10-2008" for an account.
Following up on Eddie's post about capturing, banding, and releasing a Golden Eagle at Cape May last week...it's true! We hadn't sent him any pictures yet because we didn't have internet access. This isn't the greatest picture, but it shows the eagle, wings spread. This was a great opportunity to give a presentation to the general public at the Cape May Hawk Watch Platform. There were over 50 people there, and many of them were school kids. My friend and trapping colleague, Adam Smith (he's the owner of the red sleeve you see in the photo), my lovely wife (the owner of the blue sleeve in the photo), and the Cape May Raptor Banding Project's technician, John Beetham (holding the eagle's right wing), briefly displayed the eagle to the crowd and talked about the ecology of the species, hawk migration, and the purpose for banding birds. More photos will be posted later, but I wanted to get these on there for everyone to enjoy. Although I didn't get to see it, the release was incredible....see photo below. The eagle flew out over the marsh, much to the dismay of all the waterfowl resting on the marsh! Thanks to Arthur Nelson for both these photos...Brian