Bald Eagle Couple in California Abandons Nest After Eggs Won’t Hatch

The internet’s favorite bald eagle couple has finally left their California nest and abandoned the clutch of eggs that were way past due for hatching.

Jackie and Shadow, the Bald Eagle Couple

According to Facebook posts by the non-profit Friends of Big Bear Valley, the California bald eagles Jackie and Shadow have been keeping an eye on the clutch of eggs since January, which is far longer than the typical incubation period of 35 days.

The bald eagle couple has kept an eye on the two eggs despite the region being hit by severe blizzards.

The largest bird in North America and the emblem of the United States is the bald eagle.

Jackie has a large following because she has been seen on a webcam run by Friends of Big Bear Valley for more than ten years. Numerous viewers still tune in from all over the world as the webcam has chronicled Jackie’s highs and lows over the years. In 2018, Shadow entered the picture and has remained Jackie’s mate ever since.

Some Eagle Eggs Fail to Hatch

For some time, experts have believed that this specific clutch of eggs will not hatch. For a variety of reasons, such as hyperthermia, hypothermia, toxic organisms getting inside the eggshell, or inadequate egg turning, eagle eggs can occasionally fail to hatch.

Given that Jackie and Shadow have been taking care of the eggs for weeks, a lack of egg turning is highly improbable to be the reason that these eggs are not hatching.

To incubate the eggs, both the female and male bald eagles alternately sit on them. One lays eggs, and the other looks for food.

These eggs were laid by Jackie on January 11 and 14, when powerful winter storms moved through Southern California.

The pair ultimately opted to abandon the nest on March 5.

The non-profit posted on social media that while Jackie appeared to concede that the eggs would not hatch, however, Shadow appeared to be less willing to let go, The Charlotte Observer reports.

Also Read: Partners for Life: World’s Most Romantic and Loyal Animals

Indecision of Abandoning

Shadow sat on the nest a few times, but he kept getting up and leaving as if he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do, according to Friends of Big Bear Valley. He presumably could not handle leaving the eggs alone all night, but he did leave them alone for a few hours. After dark, he came back to continue incubating the eggs during the night.

The non-profit reported that the pair of bald eagles seemed to be having a loud and serious discussion when Jackie arrived shortly after. After what Jackie appeared to be “begging,” Shadow took off. Jackie then sat on the eggs briefly then joined Shadow on a nearby tree.

The bald eagle couple vacillated and went back and forth until 4:30 in the morning when they finally left and did not come back to the nest.

Jackie has lost a clutch of eggs before; over the course of being seen on the webcam, the female bald eagle has lost about a dozen clutches.

What the future holds for the abandoned eggs at this point is uncertain. They might be consumed by a predator, like a raven, Newsweek reports.

Related Article: Bald Eagle Suffers Severe Anemia, Lethargy After Ingesting Rat Poison in Massachusetts 

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