In mid-July 2014, two cameras were installed above a bald eagle’s nest located on the Palmetto golf course, near the eastern marsh. Power and internet access were run to the tree and we expected the eagle pair to return for a third season. Nature had its own way.
Only one of the eagle pair was seen at the nest this season, visiting the nest only about half a dozen times. Perhaps the mate has been lost or strayed.
Opportunistic in using nests of others, a pair of great horned owls found the nest. They courted, exchanging prey at the nest (captured on video), and the female laid two eggs and is now brooding.
The eggs should hatch at the end of January or the first week in February. Go to www.landingsbirdcam.com to see live 24/7 video of what is happening in the nest, as we await the hatching and watch the chicks grow and fledge. The streaming video is made possible thanks to a partnership with Cornell University Lab of Ornithology. The video feed is coming to us from the Cornell site www.allaboutbirds.org and can also be seen on the Georgia DNR site http://www.georgiawildlife.com/cams
The cameras have infrared capability, enabling nighttime viewing without disrupting the owls. And there is also audio – capturing the occasional hoot and squawk, as well as the wind in our trees, and other birds. Maybe even the thwack of a golf ball off the nearby tee!
Skidaway Audubon funded the installation and the new website to support the video stream. The Landings Club board approved the project. Working with Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the eagle cam committee located a camera installer, Tim Sears, at HD on Tap, whose most recent work took him above the Arctic Circle, to document the first ever snowy owl nest cam. Members of the eagle cam committee include: Bill Costa, Rick Cunningham, John Gardner, John Platte, Chris Savage, Jim Siler and Mal Welch.
Support for the installation and upkeep has come from The Landings Association and The Landings Club and additional funding has come from Ogeechee Audubon, the Coastal Conservation Association, The Georgia Golf Course Superintendents Association, the Georgia Golf Environmental Foundation and Wild Birds Unlimited, Savannah.
Our coastal Georgia environment is featured on The Landings Bird Cam site and our experienced birders will be among the commentators and camera operators working alongside Cornell.