Jim Williams has been watching birds and writing about their antics since before "Gilligan's Island" went into reruns. Join him for his unique insights, his everyday adventures and an open conversation about the birds in your back yard and beyond.

Watching a sleeping eagle breathe

Posted by: Jim Williams under Bird biology, Nesting Updated: March 1, 2012 - 9:37 PM

 I've just spent five minutes watching a sleeping eagle breathe. This is one of the nesting Bald Eagles in Decorah, Iowa. The nest is illuminated at night; you can check in on these birds 24 hours a day. At about 9:25 p.m. Thursday one bird was on the nest, head tucked into a wing. When I watched closely I could see the bird's body expand and contract as it drew a breath. It was inhaling about once every seven seconds. There is no wind tonight, so noise from the neighborthood can be heard; the bubbling of the river below the nest, the sound of an occasional vehicle passing on the road just across the stream. This is extremely cool stuff. I recommend it, day or night. The address is www.ustream.tv/decoraheagles.

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