“Changes in Norfolk”
We are starting to get a picture of what has happened at the Norfolk Botanical Garden nest over the past week.
The intruding eagle has been identified as a 4th year female. While this bird has attained its adult plumage it still retains some darker feathers on both the tail and head giving it a somewhat "smudged" or mottled appearance. At times this intruding female has been seen with both resident eagles, with some mating behavior noted with the resident male. The resident female can be identified by the scalloped shape of her white "bib", while the male's bib has a relatively straight edge.
Oddly, at times the resident female & the intruder have been seen either flying with each other or perched quite close with no apparent conflict, at other times the tension between the birds is shown in threat displays and chasing behaviors.
The eggs have been left unattended for long periods of time and their continued viability is very much in doubt. The good news is that there is still time for this dispute to be settled and a new clutch laid.
In addition to the three eagles at the center of this territorial dispute there have been several other Eagles sighted in and around the Garden of late. Two 2nd year birds were noted soaring (and diving on the adults) on Thurs. 2/14 and another sub-adult was seen on Fri. 2/15.