“How We Got Here”
As you can read in the accompanying information on eagles provided on this Web site, eagles nest in the same nest, or same general area, for many years. A single nest may be used for more than 25 years. Our story began in 2002 when a pair of eagles established a new territory at the Norfolk International Airport, built a nest there and produced 2 young. Unfortunately, in 2003 the male of the pair was struck by an aircraft and killed before eggs could be laid. Another male quickly moved into the territory and mated successfully with the surviving female. The pair fledged one young that year.To protect human safety and preserve this breeding territory, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and the Center for Conservation Biology at William and Mary, in cooperation with the Airport, decided to remove the eagle nesting tree after the 2003 nesting season. It was hoped these two eagles would move to a nest which they had begun building in a safer location nearby.
The eagles had other ideas. They moved over to the Garden and built a new nest. This was actually a safer and better area, and plans were made with the Garden to develop an exclusion zone around the nest during each breeding season (December 15 – July 15). This marks the 3rd year that this pair of eagles has nested at the Norfolk Botanical Garden.
The adult eagles you see today began repairing and renovating their nest in earnest in December and January.The eggs were laid on February 2-5, 2006.The three eggs hatched between March 12-16, 2006.
As the breeding season progresses, we will continue to bring you up-to-date on what is happening with the eagles.