19 April, 2011

Full Circle

It was November when I spotted this pair of bald eagles together for the first time.  In December, I realized that they were nesting.  The hatching probably happened in January, completely hidden from those of us on the ground.  I saw the chicks for the first time in February, and watched their fuzzy little heads sticking up more and more over the nest in March.  In the beginning of April, they all of a sudden looked like full-grown hawks.  And now, my baby birds are leaving the nest.  Today I saw both of them sitting on the tree where I met their parents.

I also saw something pretty awesome yesterday morning.  One of the eaglets was on the "daddy tree," and while I was watching took off on a short flight around the clump of trees.  In another few weeks, after they've learned to hunt and their wings get accustomed to longer flights, they'll leave the nest and never return.  Adults re-use the same nests fairly often, so maybe we'll get to do it all over again next year.  I hope so - I'm already lamenting the empty nest!


Amy said...

I read somewhere that eagles place shiney things in the nest for the babies to play with, like bits of foil they pick up. And when it is time for the babies to leave, the parents kick out all the shiney toys.

wickedmess said...

It's so neat that you've managed to get photos of their milestones! I'm sure they'll do it again next year. As long as their nest isn't destroyed they tend to reuse them as long as they can. Even if the nest is destroyed they tend to rebuild in the same tree or neighboring trees if they can. Remember, they picked that spot because they felt safe and there was good hunting nearby. As long as that doesn't change, they'll stick around.

@Amy - That's HYSTERICAL! I wonder if that would work with humans? Toss all of the teenager/adult child's "toys" out and the kid will follow? I bet!