Monday, April 4, 2011
Yesterday, I was showing the EagleCam website to a friend and as we zoomed in close Daddy E got off the nest...it was very warm here for an early spring day. I think he was airing out his privates and giving the kids a chance to breath fresh air. Or...the older of the two eaglets was nipping him from below because of hunger. Anyway, as he leaned over the fresh kill in the nest, the little pip closed his beak on what appeared to be a feather under Daddy E's beak. When Daddy E jerked back his head to rip off a piece of entrails, he accidentally flung Junior #1 out of the bowl of the nest. Junior #1 is only 36 hours old, so there was no way he could climb up and over the brim of the nest.
I was just sick. For a moment in time, Scot and I both stopping breathing. We thought he was going over the edge. The nest is 80 feet above ground and out toward the edge there is nothing but twig structure that a little chick could easily drop through. He landed on solid material, but it was on the outside of the nest. Daddy E resettled on the nest and never tried to bring Junior #1 back across the hump. What if the temps had been in the 20s or 30s? The poor little guy was struggling, but to no avail. He was on his own and Daddy E was oblivious. I was yelling at the computer screen. Scoop him in! What kind of father are you? Where is Mommy E? There will be hell to pay when she gets back.
I had to turn off the laptop. It was like watching a suspenseful movie except this was real life and there was nothing anyone could do to save that little guy. I was sick. I could not work in studio anymore. I had to go home.
When I got home, I explained all of this to Tess and she assured me that everything was OK. She had just seen both of them in the nest. I did not believe it, so she showed me that Junior was no longer on the edge. That did not prove he had not fallen over!!!!! Maybe she had just seen the younger one and the egg thinking it was both chicks in the nest. How could the 'flung one' have make it back by himself? Tess again reassured me....she had watched as one of the birds just reached over the rim and gently scooped Junior up and over, back into the nest. Back-hoe style.
Mommy E was sitting on the nest when I logged back in to check. Just then, she got up and there they both were. Cheeping and floundering....inside the nest! All was well and both were safe. The third egg was even showing signs that Junior #3 was working away from inside his shell trying to break free. Life was good again. The Family E was intact. I also noticed that Mommy E had been busy while she was out. Lying next to the bowl was the dead rabbit from Friday, but now there was a crow and a very large fish. The pantry was stocked, everyone was safe, so I shut down the laptop and crawled into bed.