I have reviewed the archives in one minute increments every night since the installation of the flashing to keep raccoons from climbing up the cottonwood tree. So Far, So Good! Now this will not keep squirrels from getting up there and that is not a concern. Raccoons are much heavier and do not leap from small branches from nearby trees like squirrels do. Unless our raccoons are some kind of athlete, that should not be an issue.
One question has been asked frequently. When will the eagles show up? No idea, but I can tell you that I did a video last year about a mile from the nest on Sept 3rd. I did a video last season on Sept. 19th over by the farm. And our first on cam visit was Sept. 21st. That is the best information I have, and it doesn't help much. I did observe a juvenile/immature flying across the highway a couple nights ago. Sorry, no video of that. I haven't seen any eagles on my travels in the area.
Here is the video by Knarley last season.
Notice the extra piece that was also wrapped on the side. That was necessary as raccoons could have climbed up on the broken branch and stretched to the main part of the tree. Another piece was also put on that side to insure they would not be able to get a paw high enough. It would have been easier if that other branch had not grown there. The we could have put it lower to the ground. Nothing worthwhile seems to be easy. Thanks to my dad (MacGyver) for his help.
Creek side of the tree
With the discovery of what appears to be a hole in the side of the nest, I increased the urgency and installed the aluminum flashing towards the base today. When it is painted I will include a picture. I will have to observe the next couple days to determine if it is working. It really depends if they are using the bottom of the nest during the day and if they were in the nest when I installed it. They should not have a problem getting back down...just up. Time will tell.
I have received information that the NEW IR has made it through US customs from Switzerland. This is a new AXIS IR that has the ability to cover two angles above the nest, so hopefully both perching branches. That is the goal. It will be nice to have better lighting on those specific locations when there are eaglets and the parents will be babysitting from above. Notice the positive thinking? There will be minor branch trimming, so I don't want to alarm anyone when work is being done and you may be watching. Last time, I think I could hear the gasps, "Not that one!" I will post the pictures of the branches as I don't want a viewer to worry. The one out front may be too far so we will just have to see how far the telescopic pruner will reach. Domes will be cleaned and Aquapel applied to repel water and dust better. Both microphone cords will be hopefully repaired as the squirrels or raccoons have had fun. The date for the work is tentatively scheduled for August 29th.