Mapping Immature Eagle Behavior

What can we learn about eagles through satellite tracking? How far and how fast do they travel? Do they tend to stay in one place or move about often? What paths do they chose to follow, and why? You be the eagle biologist now, and study each of the immature bald eagles through snapshots of their sighting locations. What you can learn?

Example: Click for larger printable map. Write in location information. Use scale to determine distances traveled.

Try This!

  1. Divide the class into groups. Each group will be responsible for studying one of the young Bald eagles.
  2. Study the map on the map server to determine the sighting dates, and use the map scale to estimate distances traveled. Write in the numbers on the latitude and longitude lines of your map.
  3. Trace each birds path (dot-to-dot) and add the miles to find the total distance traveled.
  4. Add each bird's nest site to your map.
  5. Compare the Journey North eagle migration map with maps in your atlas. Locate geographic features to determine how natural resources might influence any patterns of travel.
  6. Organize your information, then share the information for all the birds with the class.

Nestling Bald Eagle Behavior Study

Greatest distance travled in a day            
# States crossed            
Total distance traveled (aprox.)            
Closest distance recorded near nest            
* Describe any pattern bird is following            

* For instance, are they following major water courses? What are the types of areas they are stopping/settling in when they do ? (ie near water, food, undisturbed?).

Journaling Questions
  • There are 2 siblings taken from the same nest, one male (P90) and one female (P89). Is their behavior any different from the unrelated birds?
  • Based on your observations can you determine whether sex makes a difference in behavior?
  • What conclusions can you make about nest site location and distance traveled?
  • What statements can you make about eagle behavior?
  • Make a list of other questions you would like answered about these eagles.