This morning Kristin found the banded male on Tomahawk – Sunflower Bay freshly killed and being consumed by eagles. This is a sad discovery for us, because he was a sweet, tame bird with a rich history of rearing chicks — on two separate territories. We cannot be certain that an eagle killed the male, but he was healthy on our last visit, and the pair had recently nested. So we strongly suspect our national bird!
This is a reminder that, while they usually seem to be merely a nuisance, eagles DO have the potential to kill adult loons. Our best-documented example of an adult kill was a female attacked and dispatched by an eagle on a nest on Alva Lake back in 2005. Of course, eagles are a constant threat to chicks.
Funny, but I have struggled to love our national symbol recently. I hope that does not sound unpatriotic!