Many thanks for all of your posts and questions! As many have alluded to we have been observing some unusual behaviors at this nest over the past few weeks. The short of it is that despite our great view of this nest it can be very challenging to determine exactly what is occurring at the nest and around the area of the nest.
It is also very difficult to identify individual eagles when birds are not marked with unique bands or tags.
As for those of you who are confused or wanting clarification about the 'rampant speculation' on the chat bar on ustream. My apologies. I would recommend that you join us on the BRI online community located at this link http://briloon.ning.com/, rather than the ustream chat bar. This is a great place to catch up on happenings and post photos of your observations.
Additional response to comments:
(1) Eagles have not nested here since 2007.
(2) We will not be able to determine the outcome of this nesting effort until we observe chicks or fail to see chicks by May 1 (realistically, this is a late hatch date based on March 24 egg-laying).
(3) The possibility of an eagle laying an egg several weeks after a first clutch is very low but as a biologist I have learned that nothing is impossible.
(4) It is not unusual for eagles to tend a nest past the likely hatch date even when the eggs are no longer viable.
I hope this clarifies some of the questions that you have put forth. I think that it is important to recognize that observation and not speculation is the first step of the scientific process. I know that I remain at the observational level and appreciate the opportunity to learn what will happen next. i remain cautiously optimistic.
Have a great day and enjoy the webcam.
BioDiversity Research Institute