White-tailed eagle nest camera 2016

Submitted by Looduskalender on Sun, 21.02.2016 - 15:01
Text: Urmas Sellis, Kotkaklubi - Eagle Club
Photos: Triin Leetmaa, Omar Neiland
Transmission courtesy of Tele2 / Televõrk and EENet
Translation: Liis

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The white-tailed eagle camera is located at a nest in West Estonia, a neighbour to the nest of Linda and Sulev that we have watched previously. Installation of the camera took two days in mid-January (it was still cold weather then, around -15⁰C), taking part were Renno, Omar, Triin and Urmas. Later Renno and Omar had to adjust a few minor details .

Renno and Omar crafting the frames for the solar panels.


Urmas pesa juures toimetamas
Urmas busy at the nest


Setting up the solar panels.

Overview of the nest neighbourhood
Renno found this nest only last year, but the nest is not much older than that. Last year no eaglets grew up here, thus installing the camera is so to say a risk project. Quite many different birds visited the nest in the first half of February, among them an adult bird that seems to be the owner of the nest. We saw a white-tailed eagle in the nest for the first time on January 28th; however, we were not able to watch earlier either. From the nest the  view opens to a bay with plenty of birds where the white-tailed eagles go hunting.
The camera system is designed so that when darkness arrives all power-using devices are switched off and when light is returning they are switched on again. This allows the energy need to be reduced significantly and there will be no need to change batteries and thereby risking to disturb the nest life of the eagles. The solar panels work well when they are not covered by snow and the sun shines. In case of longer days images can be transmitted all day and night. The camera has been replaced with a new  AXIS F41  (which is also easier to install unnoticeably at the nest) and the microphone Omar made himself.   From the transmitter antenna in the highest tree of the nest forest the Elisa mobile tower is in direct sight. A receiver antenna is located there and from there the signal goes along the Televõrk cables to the  EENet server. In the server the signal is split for the thousands of viewers all over the world who want to take part of what is going on in the nest. In the forest and in the mobile tower we use  Mikrotik antennas.
Beginning on February 15th all movement by humans in the vicinity of white-tailed eagle nests is prohibited (without special permit) by the Nature Conservation Act.  Everyone watching the nest life by the webcam can check that this decree is upheld, and has the chance to be an invisible Nature Protection Inspector at the nest...
... but let us hope that all works out well, and that in July we will see the first flights of the eaglets.
As always many splendid and helpful people have been connected with the enterprise. The camera system this time was set up thanks to significant support from ventilation system producer  ETS NORD AS : on the opening of their new production facility, partners and customers were asked to support the nest camera project of the Eagle Club instead of bringing flowers. Many heartfelt thanks also to private donors. The system parts are quite expensive and without friendly and generous supporters we would not have been able to use them.
Using the stream from the nest elsewhere is not forbidden but we ask you to let us know (see contacts at the bottom of the page or send a note to urmas(ät)kotkas.ee). ETS NORD took on the task of camera godparent on their own initiative. Godparents are invited to all the cameras.
More information on events in the nest will be in the Looduskalender  forum  and the white-tailed eagle camera news here on the main page.
Our partners in the enterprise:
  Kotkaklubi       EENet