The Decorah North Eagles are nesting on private property north of Decorah, Iowa. Their nest is located in an oak tree in a scrap of forest bordering a valley. A stream is located nearby where cattle are pastured. In general, the eagles begin their courtship in October, with productive mating in late January or early February, and egg-laying in mid to late February. Hatching usually begins in late March to early April, and the young eaglets fledge in mid-to-late June. Watch them begin their lives on HD video.
Take a peek inside this massive bald eagle nest in North Decorah, Iowa. Video credit, Explore/YouTube.
Decoria North Eagles usually disperse between August and October, the adults remain on the territory year-round. The eagles eat fish, squirrels, rabbits, muskrats, deer, possums, and anything else they can catch or find. To learn more about bald eagles in general, please visit Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
The first nest at the North site was built in a pine tree. The branches collapsed after the second nesting season and the Eagles moved to a dead elm tree. They nested there for just one year before moving to their current location in late 2013. In August of 2018, their nest collapsed and slid or fell out of the nest tree during an extremely heavy storm. None of the tree branches were broken or damaged, so we decided to build a starter nest in the same spot.
In 2021, the north nest was 8.25 feet at its longest point and 6.25 feet at its widest point. Measured outermost stick to outermost stick, the nest measured 12 feet across. We can’t really get a height on it, since we can’t get anywhere near the bottom and the nest slopes downward from the top. Our best guess is six feet high. Credit, Raptor Research Project.