Photo courtesy of Heron Habitat Helpers
A heron turns eggs in one of the nests depleted by eagles.

Heron habitat at Kiwanis Ravine being destroyed by eagles

We received a note from the Heron Habitat Helpers about heron eggs in the Kiwanis Ravine being destroyed by eagles. Most of the herons of the 90-plus great blue heron nests have abandoned the colony due to this predation. The Helpers are asking residents of Ballard and Magnolia to help spot any new nests.

We'll be following up on this case. For more information, read the full note below.

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The majority of 90-plus great blue heron nests established this spring in Kiwanis Ravine, located near Discovery Park, have failed due to eagle predation of eggs and chicks. Heron Habitat Helpers, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting herons and the Kiwanis Ravine colony, is asking residents of Magnolia and Ballard to report any sightings of herons carrying twigs and building new nests to info@heronhelpers.org.

Heron Habitat Helpers heron monitor Pam Cahn has been observing the Kiwanis Ravine colony since February. She reports that most of the herons have abandoned the colony due to repeated eagle incursions, although an undetermined number of nests, some with chicks that have hatched, remain. In the last few days, Cahn has seen dramatically increased heron nest-building activity at Commodore Park, located a short distance from Kiwanis Ravine. The new nests are believed to be the product of herons previously nesting in Kiwanis Ravine.

People living in Magnolia and Ballard can help Heron Habitat Helpers track heron nesting activity by watching for herons in flight carrying small sticks and twigs and noting an approximate location where these birds land. Herons nest in both deciduous and coniferous trees. Information about nesting activities should be sent to info@heronhelpers.org.

Heron Habitat Helpers was established in 2001 to help Seattle residents enjoy, learn about, and protect the city’s largest great blue heron nesting colony in Kiwanis Ravine. More information about the organization is at www.heronhelpers.org.

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