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The Eagles of Hornby Island
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The Eagles of Hornby Island

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 130 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 ).

Please see the links on the right of this page to explore archival photos and videos of the past several years.

UPDATE

October 2013. The camera was taken down on September 21 and has been "drying out" for the past week and a half. The weather over the next few days was wet and stormy, so the second part of the operation was delayed by several days. On Thursday, October 3, the Securco technician will be on Hornby to examine and clean the camera, and then Dan and crew will replace the camera in the tree. Just in time for Mom and Dad's expected return!

HEGPS is very grateful to everyone who contributed to our recent fundraiser ~ thank you to each and every one of you!

 

September 2013. We noticed that the cam had an unusual amount of condensation on the inside of the dome. The technical experts at Securco, the company that installed the camera system, think that this is due to the unusually rainy and humid weather on Hornby Island over the past few weeks. They recommend taking the camera down from the tree, removing the dome and allowing the camera to dry overnight. The next day the Securco technician will inspect, clean, and make any necessary repairs such as replacing the gasket, then reseal the dome before the cam is replaced in the tree.

It will be expensive to have Whiskey Jack Tree Services do two 3-man climbs and the Securco tech travel to Hornby, but there is no doubt that we want to keep observing Mom and Dad in their nest and territory so will pay for these necessary services.

Initial estimates suggest a cost of $5000, so we are asking for some help from  Mom & Dad's friends to cover current and future expenses.

August 2013.  After a relatively uneventful summer, marked mostly by crows harassing Mom and Dad on their perches, the eagles have taken off for their typical late summer trip to find salmon. Dad was last seen on Sunday, August 4. Mom spent the next day sitting very quietly in the Babysitting Tree, then took off early on Tuesday (August 6).

April 2013. Early in the month, the eagles continued typical pre-nesting behavior, with both bringing in grasses and sticks to the nest, and Dad bringing food gifts to Mom. Once again, an intruder landed on the nest and was chased away by the owners.

March 2013. The herring spawn, an annual event in March off Hornby, began on March 5. At first light, we could see patches of pale turquoise water, and by later in the morning such patches were visible from Sandstone to Grassy Point. The spawn attracted several visiting eagles of all ages. Dad continued to reject the "advances" of another female; he brought food gifts to Mom and they mated several times.

The usual time frame for Mom Hornby to lay her eggs (~March 20) came and went, however, and Mom did not lay any eggs.

February 2013. This was a challenging month for the Hornbys. There were several young visitors to the area, some of whom were allowed to sit on Mom and Dad's perch trees and others that were chased off.

More alarmingly, there were a series of confrontations with adults (or subadults), both in the air and on perch trees. One adult intruder landed on the nest tree and in the nest itself with Dad (Feb 8-11).  Dad was not pleased and reacted by beaking or wing-slapping this eagle, who seemed to be begging for food gifts from him. At one point, though, she appeared to push him from the nest (Feb 10).  Mom Hornby was not seen for four days (Feb 8-11), the same days that this apparently female intruder was close to and in the nest with Dad.

Feb 11 was a day of eagles displacing each other from the perch trees, and on Feb 12 we saw Mom and Dad mating on the Babysitting Tree. Since then, Mom and Dad have been together and have been observed mating on several different perch trees.

January 2013.  More nest materials (sticks and grass) were brought to the nest.

December 2012. The first mating to be observed on camera was on December 2, and another mating was seen on December 8. A juvenile was observed sitting in Foster's Fir on Dec 18.  

October 2012.  After a few false alarms, thinking Mom was back when she was not, sightings of both Mom and Dad were confirmed on October 15. Over the next few days, they toured their territory, visiting their various perch trees (Foster's, Babysitting Tree, the Peters' Tree, His&Hers Tree, Mishi's Tree, and the nest) and communicating with neighboring pair(Wiigs). The first delivery of nest materials was on October 23.

September 2012. The cam was remounted on the tree about 25 feet higher than the original location. The great view we had is even better now. Dan and crew from Whiskey Jack Tree Services did an amazing job of readjusting the camera - while working nearly 200 feet in the air! 

Dan and Dale moving cam

 

April 2012   The new "Nest and Territory Cam" was installed and went live on April 21, broadcasting over Ustream: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/hornbyeaglecam


Projects

shredder_mask
Shredder was one of several animals
rescued and supported in care
by HEGPS and friends.
He was emaciated and
near death when rescued.
After 3 months in rehab at MARS,
he was released in November 2011.

Starting in 2009, HEGPS members and friends contributed to purchasing equipment and paying the costs associated with streaming and broadcasting the Hornby Eagles webcam. In addition, HEGPS volunteers donated their time and expertise to public education and data collection, plus building and maintaining the website and forum.

In July 2010, the Hornby eaglet Phoenix died of acute aspergillosis at 76 days of age. Following the outpouring of grief over her death, we began to promote and assist wildlife rehabilitation facilities such as Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society (MARS) on Vancouver Island, the group that ensured Phoenix was examined and that her legacy would continue to benefit other wildlife in need of rescue.

The Hornby Eagles Advanced Response Team (HEART) is comprised of Hornby residents who respond to calls of animals in distress.  Since 2010, more than 15 creatures have been taken to rehabilitation facilities on Vancouver Island.  You can see a list of those rescues HERE.

Read about the projects we have accomplished.

 

 

 

THANK YOU!

After 17 months of non-stop operation, the PTZ camera needed maintenance to dry and clean the inside of the dome. HEGPS held a two-week fundraising drive (ending 30 September 2013) to pay for two tree climbs and a visit from the Securco technician, plus replenish the cam maintenance account. 

We are very grateul to everyone who helped to meet and exceed our goal!

fundraising

Mom and Dad watch the progress
as of October 1, 2013

 

From the Archives

Ground Observations
Ground photos from 2009 (Hope)
Ground photos from 2010 (Phoenix)
Ground photos from 2011 (Alexandra & David)
Ground photos from 2012 (Hali)
Ground photos from 2013

Videos
Hornby Eagle videos on You Tube

DVDs of the 2009, 2010, and 2011 Hornby seasons are available.

DVD 2011
2011 DVD

DVD 2010
2010 DVD

2009 DVD Image
2009 DVD


For cameras and technical assistance, HEGPS recommends Securco

HEGPS supports the mission of WiTS

Do you have HEART?

If you would like to be one of the "Friends with HEART" and both honor the HEART team as well as help out the animals' caregivers, please consider supporting the rehab effort by making a contribution to the rehab centres, either directly or through HEGPS.  We (HEGPS) have set up a "Hornby Wildlife Sponsorship Fund" in order to either help with rehab costs for rescued wildlife and/or sponsor the release of that creature back to its wild home.

Read more on the forum at the link below:

Be a "Friend with HEART"

 

Mom and Dad Hornby

Mom and Dad Hornby

 

 

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