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Thread subject: A gust of WIND
Name Date Message
Marie 05/27/05 02:44 am This past Saturday Victoria experience rather nasty winds. It was an unusual storm and at one point I ran down to the beach to look at the Eagles nest. I was worried. Sure enough I had good reason to be.........
The next day I visited... as I have on several days this week only to see the front end of the nest rather precariously swaying. It no longer looked stable, but the female would always feed her young at this end. I now can only conclude that a branch had fallen across part of the nest trapping the young ones in this area. The two baby eaglets were always at this part of the nest on my visits. Infact, they were way too close to the edge.
I am so thankful not to have been on the beach at ten this morning. Even on a perfectly sunny, warm morning disaster can strike. A GUST of WIND off the water lifted the front edge and part of the unstable nest, causing it to fall to the rocks below. The little eaglets fell to their deaths. The female in the tree apparently flew around several times but didn't come down to her chicks. Two photographer friends of mine were at the beach at the time and saw the whole thing. After a time one of them picked the eaglets up. They decided it wasn't appropriate to leave them there on a public beach, however the question remains would the parent eagles need to be with their young for a period of time..................no one knows! After hearing this sad news I went down to the beach. There I found what looked like the female out on a rock on her favorite island. She was standing still in one place looking down..........was she grieving ? The male was in the nest and appeared to be eating left overs..An eery silence permeated this once lively nest area. At my feet sticks and soft nest debris lay scattered on the rocks and sand. My heart went out to this pair. They had, like all raptors, invested so much time and effort this season. After eating, the male flew up into the branches above the nest and sat there. Three hours later I returned and found the female in exactly the same spot and position as I had seen her earlier. She is much bigger than the male so could tell the difference. I couldn't find the male in the nest tree, however it is heavily leaved now and spotting eagles in it is difficult at 9pm. The sadness of the day hung heavy in the fading light.
To add more heart wrenching stories I learnt too this evening, that two eagle chicks only 24-48 hrs old had been blown down in their nest this past Saturday. This is a very difficult year it appears for Eagles. None of the three eagles nests in the Dept of National Defence property are active. A chick died after three days in a nest being video camed on Hornby Island. It had appeared fit and healthy. The second egg in that nest never hatched. Another nest failed after one of the adults was injured. This is not the''Year of the Eagle'' in this area that is for sure. I will scout out my other three nests on the W/E and hopefully find at least one surviving chick in each.
This news is hard to write...I go to bed with a heavy heart.
It doesn't help when I read of # 4's struggle in the Osprey nest........
If I cease to feel sadness at times like this then I can only experience half the joy when Nature is at her best.
Tiger 05/27/05 05:00 am Oh that is a sad story Marie. It show just vulnerable nests are in times of bad weather.

Guess that there is always next year.

Celeste 05/27/05 05:17 am Oh Marie, that is sad indeed.....
Shelley 05/27/05 05:48 am Oh, Marie, I am so sorry to hear this. And yes, I truly believe that they DO grieve. Do you remember Star, the eagle at the Kent, Washington nest, 2 seasons ago, after she lost her chick. It died after only a day or so and the other egg never hatched. She, too, sat staring into the nest for the longest time and I truly believe that she was grieving. It was very heartbreaking to watch. But last season made up for it with 2 successful chicks.
((Hugs)) to you, my friend...
Pam 05/27/05 06:57 am The only consolation Marie, if there is one, is that the Bald Eagles have proliferated recently. You must be feeling really depressed after watching their progress only for this to happen. Having watched eagles for so long now at RR, I am sure they have feelings, it is very apparent. My belief is that most developed living creatures have feelings and great sensitivity - I have witnessed it too many times to believe otherwise. I will be sad when I look at your photographs now knowing what happened at the nest. What is happening to the darned weather, everywhere seems to be experiencing unusual conditions this year ?
Lori 05/27/05 07:09 am Marie.... many heartfelt hugs to you.
karen 05/27/05 08:49 am Marie how awful. My heart was breaking reading your story. There is no way to harden one's heart to nature.
Cecilia 05/27/05 08:58 am Condolences Marie..I know how much you loved to watch over this family. Nature at her cruelist for sure.
Tay 05/27/05 08:58 am Thats awful Marie sorry to hear it. How sad .:(
Marie 05/27/05 05:54 pm Thank you all for your thoughts........it is very hard at the moment but this too will pass.........

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Tom Throwe
Last modified: Sat Feb 18, 2006