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SWFL Eagle Cam stars ready for second brood of the season

April 1, 2020
By CHUCK BALLARO (news@breezenewspapers.com) , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

Harriet and M15, Southwest Florida's most famous eagle pair may be parents again.

As of shortly after noon Monday, the hatching of E15 was imminent following the eaglet's average 35-day incubation period. A second eaglet, E16, is expected to hatch Wednesday or Thursday in the nest in a big pine off Bayshore Road on the Pritchett farm.

E15 "pipped" around 7:15 a.m. on Sunday, which included some spectacular views on the SWFL Eagle Cam where the eaglet's beak could be seen peeking out of the shell as it continued to break its way out of the shell that morning. It also showed a hint of blood on the shell, which is not unusual following a hatch.

The hatching process can take two days or even more and is very tiring for the eaglet.

Mom, Harriett, wasn't making it easy to follow as she hunkered down on the eggs for more than an hour, not giving viewers a chance to check on the progress.

Eventually, Harriet sat down in a position where her adorning public could see much of E15's shell. A close-up view showed the eaglet trying to break out, the shell visibly moving, with viewers awaiting the moment we would see the baby for the first time.

There is an article that explains the hatching process on the Southwest Eagle Cam website at dickpritchettrealestate.com/btyMzPlbbnc.html.

As expected, traffic at the Eagle Cam was much busier than usual.

More than 7,500 viewers watched on Monday morning, more than five times the number the SWFL Eagle Cam has seen during the nesting process.

This is the second clutch of the season after the eagle parents, Harriet and M15, lost their first eaglet (E14) to a broken blood feather on Jan. 15. It was later found via a necropsy that E14 had increased levels of anticoagulant rodenticide or rat poison that prevented E14's blood from clotting normally and led to its death. Their second egg of that clutch never hatched.

Thirty-eight days after E14's death, on. Feb. 22, Harriet laid another egg, then another three days later for the second clutch.

Assuming the eaglets follow the natural progression, which is around 12 weeks, they are expected to fledge in late June.

Viewers of any age can watch and track all the action on the official SWFL Eagle Cam website, the official Facebook page, Twitter feed, Instagram account, Tumblr page and YouTube channel.

Teachers or groups looking to use the cam as an educational resource or class project, can contact the SWFEC at: info@southwestfloridaeaglcam.com.

 
 

 

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