Bald Eagle and subadult: transmitter & antenna & LEG BANDS!

January 13, 2015 in Bald Eagle

For those with an interest, a fascinating additional sighting on Tuesday of the transmitter/antenna adult Bald Eagle.  Photos include partial view of leg band codes, PTT transmitter, and antenna.  No clarity around possible origin of this bird and no clear way to whittle down the possibilities, with lots of expert input as you’ll see below.  Stopped by the Great Stone Dam again in Lawrence Tuesday morning and encountered both an adult and a subadult bald eagle on the ice!Looks like a gull had been ripped apart and they took turns.  Was able to watch and capture photos from the west side of the Great Stone Dam bridge.  The bridge is on South Broadway and is also known as Rt. 28.  The adult had a transmitter and a PTT antenna that sticks up……so fired away with camera hoping to possibly get band codes.  The adult looks like it has a possible “E” on the band.  I’m not able to clarify any further info.  The subadult looks like P/7 which has been seen and photographed previously.
Links to photos:
Adult feeding on gull, cleaning bill, walking ice, and drinking:   CLICK “NEXT” UPPER RIGHT TO ADVANCE
4 photos of subadult (2.5yrs) with P/7 leg band:
4 photos of adult leg band:
2 photos of PTT transmitter and antenna:
P/7 info from Tom French:
Bald Eagle
Band numbers:  0679-04089, and P/7 burnt orange
Banding date and Location:  06-12-12 – MA, Essex Co., Amesbury, Powwow River (tributary of the Merrimack River).
Sex:  Possible female based on size compared to sibling (7.25 lb)
Siblings: P/6 (5.75 lb)
No previous band reports
From Charlie Todd, Coordinator of Endangered/threatened Species in Maine:
A few of our orange anodized bands deployed on eagles during 1984-1987 (N = 249 eagles) still show up.  Most are faded to pale gold but at least one I’ve handled was absolutely colorless.  As you know, anodized aluminum bands of that era were not very colorfast.  However, only one bird with an orange color band (code = E7E) was fitted with a PTT satellite unit.  It was a rehab bird released near Auburn ME on 12/11/2005) and the transmitter failed years ago.  A few of the 1984-87 eagles had VHF transmitters (with the long floppy antenna dangling over the tail) but that first photo shows an erect antenna typical of PTT satellite units.  Quebec has used orange color bands & some PTT transmitters in recent years.  Check with Charles on possibilities from there.  Best – Charlie

Charlie Todd                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Endangered & Threatened Species Coordinator                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

From Charles Maisonneuve, bird biologist in Quebec,

There are no numbers on the bands we use to mark bald eagles, only a combination of 2 letters, one over the other.  If you are sure the code ends with a 5, then it’s not a bird banded in Québec.

Charles Maisonneuve, biologiste

Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs

Direction de la gestion de la faune du Bas-Saint-Laurent

Any and all further input and comments most welcome as we gather more information.  These were best of the limited band photos!