VDGIF/Norfolk Botanical Garden Eagle Cam: Branching

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, in partnership with the Norfolk Botanical Garden and WVEC, is providing a rare glimpse into the life of two bald eagles and their offspring!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


The oldest eaglet branched for the 1st time today. Branching is the process by which the young birds hop out of the nest onto the limbs next to it. This is a small step towards eventual fledging. Branching allows the birds to begin to really stretch their wings, improving their coordination and balance while building the muscles they'll need for flight. Bald eagles fledge, or leave the nest, any time between 9 and 14 weeks, although young from this nest seem to average slightly over 11 weeks.

They'll need to branch out to find room to spread their wings as each will have a wingspan of between 6-8 feet. It will definitely get crowded in there!