The view from beneath the nest looking up is not great! Looking down, we see splotches of white Eagle droppings, scarcely visible among the blooms of a low-growing ground cover.
We’ve progressed from sparse, new foliage to richer tones of green and fuller growth. Since our view of the eaglet is diminishing, we venture to the other side of the river for one last look before we head north for the summer.
It’s not easy being an eaglet … especially without siblings. Junior is usually alone when we visit and asleep but today, Ted catches the eaglet flapping about the nest and we are amazed at the breadth of his or her wingspan. Junior’s parent watches with an eagle eye to make sure the young one doesn’t stray (or spill!) from the nest.
Another day, Ted sets up his monopod on the rock directly across the river from the nest. Junior’s dad is not so sure we are harmless. Perhaps because we have brought a friend with us, Papa roundly scolds us.
Eagle parents are seldom at the nest these days. We catch a glimpse of Mama looking bedraggled and tired, not a Kodak moment.
We’re delighted to be back in Maryland but totally amazed to see our fuzzy eaglet has sprouted real feathers and is nearly as large as Mama.
Where is the male eagle? We haven’t seen him during two visits. I find a helpful site online with answers to some of our questions about Eagles:
Do Eagles mate for life? Yes.
How long do Eagle eggs take to hatch? About 35 days.
We read that Eaglet feathers are brown as soon as they start to appear at about 5 weeks. Eaglets can be fully feathered by 9 weeks. Although our Junior is looking sturdy and healthy, I worry to read only one in 10 eaglets normally survives to adulthood.
We’re pleased to note that Junior is adapting to his world and observes protocol by shooting excrement over the edge of the nest. Way to go! Good job!