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Decorah Eagles Battling to Keep Their Home

Teddy Llovet
Great horned owls steal nests to raise their young.

While the Seahawks are fighting one showdown this weekend, many across the world have their eyes on a different bird battle: Horned Owls vs. Bald Eagles.

The world-famous Decorah eagles have two large nests, as big as "Volkswagens in trees," says Bob Anderson, Director of the Raptor Resource Project.  Horned owls steal, rather than build, their nests and a pair saw the opportunity for a new home in Decorah earlier this week.

"About a week ago, one of the eagles saw an owl in the nest in the middle of the night and it went to chase it away, and then the mate of that particular owl struck the male bald eagle so hard it knocked it right out of the nest."

Anderson says he's not sure who will win out in the nest showdown (he suspects the first to lay an egg will be the victor), but he and his team won't be intervening.

"We're hoping the horned owls go over to the old nest and the bald eagles can keep their nest. That would be the ideal situation because we have cameras at both trees. It'd make a very exciting Decorah Eagle Cam this year if we had both nesting great horned owls and bald eagles."

On this News Buzz episode of River to River, host Ben Kieffer talks to Anderson about the possible takeover. Watch the video of the attack here and check out the falcon cams here.

Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River