Decorah eagles ready to take their turn in the spotlight - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Decorah eagles ready to take their turn in the spotlight

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WINNESHIEK COUNTY (KWWL) -

After a year away from the spotlight, the Decorah eagles are getting ready to lay their eggs.

And this year, the world will be watching once again.

The Eagle Cam is making Decorah a destination..

The Decorah Eagle Cams have become a worldwide phenomenon thanks to the internet.

Many times, Bob Anderson is at the controls.

He's the director of the Raptor Resource Project..

"There's something that takes place psychologically with bird cams and something as popular as the Decorah Eagle Cam. Somwhere between 50 and 500 hours of watching it, it becomes your eagles. I see that. It becomes their birds and they have to come here to see their birds," said Anderson.

Visitors from around the world come to Winneshiek County to see the eagles in their natural habitat. Now, last year, the eagles decided not to be in a nest that was videotaped so the numbers dropped slightly. This year, that's not expected to be the case.

That's because last year's nest is now surrounded by cameras, too.

It's about 300 feet from the other nest with cameras.

The nests are now the top destination in Decorah.

"Last year, when the camera was not on them, the numbers dropped drastically. 2 years ago, we were much busier than we were last year," said Bill Kalishek, a fisheries biologist at the nearby Decorah Fish Hatchery.

The eagles activity can be entertaining, soothing, but most of all a learning opportunity.

"Because we have infrared cameras, we've learned bald eagles come and go during the night. We didn't know that," said Anderson.

Besides cameras on the other nest, also new this year are cameras on a nest along the Mississippi River near Glen Haven, Wisconsin in Grant County.

People can watch both at the same time.

"We know this pair brings in trout and squirrels, a lot of squirrels. The pair on the Mississippi River brings in fish and ducks so I do see a little change in what they bring in for chow," said Anderson.

Anderson expects eggs to be laid in the next two to three weeks.

Then, the world will watch.

The cameras are running now, if you'd like to watch the eagles continue to build their nest to anticipate their new arrivals.

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