WASHINGTON (WJZ/AP) — Both eaglets in the nest at the National Arboretum have hatched!
Since New Year’s Eve, millions of viewers have tuned into the DC Eagle Cam placed there to watch two live-streaming, high-definition cameras featuring the wild nest of Bald Eagles Mr. President and The First Lady.
For the past month, these parents have been faithfully incubating two eggs in their nest at the top of a Tulip Poplar tree.
Their devoted attention and dedicated efforts finally began to pay off Wednesday morning, as one of the eaglets began the hatching process. Today, its sibling joined it.
During incubation, an eaglet develops an “egg-tooth” on the tip of its upper beak, which is used to crack holes in its eggshell from the inside. The first hole made in the shell is called a “pip.”
American Eagle Foundation (AEF) volunteer camera operators witnessed the first egg, laid on February 19, crack just before 10 a.m. Wednesday.
The second was laid on February 23, and a “pip” was seen in that one Wednesday night or Thursday morning.
The average incubation period for an eagle egg is 35 days.
These will have been the fourth and fifth eaglets raised by these parents.
In several weeks, the general public will have the opportunity to help come up with official names for these eaglets.
In 2015, the American Eagle Foundation (AEF) staff traveled to D.C. to install state-of-the-art cameras, infrared lighting, and other related equipment in and around the nest tree with the help of volunteers and experienced tree arborists and climbers. This past year, the AEF added microphones near the nest to further enhance the viewing experience, and a team of arborists and eagle experts affixed natural tree limbs beneath the nest to provide added support.
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