The Hornby Eagle Group (HEG) formed in 2009 to continue broadcasting the Hornby Eagles webcam, which was first streamed in 2006. In December 2010, the Group became a registered non-profit Society in British Columbia and was renamed the Hornby Eagle Group Projects Society (HEGPS).
For two years, we were privileged to broadcast a live, intimate view of a beloved pair of bald eagles, Mom and Dad Hornby, and their eaglets Phoenix (2010) and Alexandra & David (2011). The original webcams were retired in the autumn of 2011. In April 2012, HEGPS installed a new camera on "Gregg's Tree", which is about 230 feet from the nest tree; while the view is not as intimate as provided by the older cameras, we can see the Hornby's territory and perch trees, as well as the nest tree and nest itself. The Hornby Island ground crew continues to monitor the nest and post videos and photographs of Mom and Dad Hornby in our forum (Our Nature Zone).
Spring and summer came and went, but we have not seen Mom Hornby since mid-March. Dad stayed on or near the nest tree, holding his territory. A female we called "Em" (for the appearance of her white neck feathers, which seem to shape the letter M) stayed close by Dad's side, clearly helping to defend the territory and perhaps hoping to be accepted by Dad.
The last day that we saw Dad on cam was July 24. After that, eagle activity in the area dwindled to nothing, as it usually does in the late summer.
Last year, Mom Hornby was seen on the nest on October 23; Dad was around for several days prior to that. We are all waiting to see what happens this October. Stay tuned ... and check the Forum for daily information.
After a relatively uneventful January and February, March 2015 turned out to be a time of great change for Mom and Dad.
On the evening of March 1, Mom flew off to chase another eagle. She did not return for her usual brief late-night nest visit. When we next saw Mom, her face, eyes, beak, and the back of her head had several discolored areas that eventually resolved into areas of injury (rather than clinging food from foraging). Mom and Dad were seen together on the cam through March 15 and by our ground observer on March 14.
A great number of eagles were in the territory at that time, awaiting herring. Eagles of all ages competed for fish and for good perches. This year, there seemed to be more food competition than usual. There were also a number of new adults, some of whom were vying for Dad's attention. While it appears that many visitors in for the herring spawn may have dispersed, we continue to see some immatures and some young females.
At this time (April 2, 2015), we appear to have two or more females (five and six years of age) competing for Dad's attention. We do not know whether Mom has died, has been vanquished, or has removed herself from the fray. There have been no reports of dead or injured/grounded eagles on the island to date. Dad continues to hold and defend the territory.
Read earlier updates here.