Notes on the chick(s)
For most of the next couple of weeks this chick(s) will be out of view in the nest bowl and covered almost constantly by the adults because the chicks cannot maintain their body temperature. However, with enough food the chicks will be gaining about 100 grams per day. The female will be on the nest site around 90% of the time and the male 50%. After about two weeks the downy chicks will start to develop black pin feathers.
This next two weeks is a critical time for the chick(s). If the adults are disturbed from the nest site, the chicks could be prayed upon by crows or ravens and the chicks could be exposed to cold wet weather. It looks like the birds will face challenging weather over the next five days: rain/snow/wind and temperatures in the high 30s are predicted.
The eggs are generally laid 48 hours apart and the chicks will hatch at about the same interval. We know that there are at least two eggs, and there certainly is a chance for a third. Since the chicks are so small and below the nest bowl, we may not be able to see them for several days after they hatch. The best indicator we will have of a second or third chick is the adult feeding in two locations on the nest. Please post a comment if you see this behavior.
A realistic scenario is that the chick we have seen is actually from the second egg laid and that the first one failed because it was laid in extremely cold weather (-17). However this pair has been full of surprises and we very well might see another eaglet.
On another note, BioDiversity Research Institute is extremely pleased to announce a brand new venture with National Geographic and the eagle cam. This collaboration will improve the project in all ways. With joint promotion, we'll be able to bring the live video to more computer screens, we can offer all viewers unlimited viewing time, and plans are well underway to use new technology to make the image quality even better. We'll let everyone know when the new technology is operational. This is really exciting. Stay tuned for more information.
Thank you all for all of your wonderful comments.
Wing Goodale, BioDiversity Research Institute