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Bald eagle parents bicker over who gets to keep the eggs warm in viral live cam

Bald eagle parents bicker over who gets to keep the eggs warm in viral live cam
Posted at 1:45 PM, Mar 05, 2024

With days to go before hatching, a pair of bald eagle parents in Southern California are spending their days — and nights — arguing over egg-watching duties.

But it’s not for the reason you might think: Jackie and Shadow keep pecking at each other because they both want to sit on the nest and keep the eggs warm!

(Jackie might have a pushy partner on her hands, but as eagle dads go, he’s a big improvement over Valor I, an eagle who was so irresponsible with his egg-watching duties that his mate found herself another male eagle, resulting in a trio of eagles protecting the nest!)

Friends of Big Bear Valley, a nonprofit group of nature lovers, noticed the domestic disputes between Jackie and Shadow thanks to a 24-hour live camera they’ve trained on the nest. They’re keeping folks updated via Facebook, explaining the various ways the couple communicates.

In a March 3 post, the group described mom Jackie’s “hilarious, determined dedication” as she took a quick morning break after a night of sitting, then had to poke and nip at Shadow, the proud papa, to get him to move along:

“For the rest of the day, Jackie played hard ball,” the Friends shared. “First, it took Shadow two stick deliveries to get his next turn, and later, even a fish delivery did not make Jackie leave the nest.”

Shadow’s got to play by Jackie’s rules if he wants some nest time.

The couple’s tension may be rising because Jackie’s eggs are due to hatch imminently. The first egg was laid on Jan. 25, and with a 35-day-or-so incubation period, the big moment is about to arrive.

You can watch the livestream below — I highly recommend it, it’s very peaceful (aside from the occasional eagle kerfuffle):

Jackie and Shadow do have their tender side, too. A post from Feb. 29 detailed a peaceful shift change: “Jackie took over egg watch while Shadow went fishing for the best fish he could find for his favorite queen. She loved it … As his reward, he stayed on the eggs for two extra hours! He was in heaven and proud that he pleased his lady.”

Aw! Relationship goals. Fingers — er, talons — crossed for safe hatchings!

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