Friday, April 07, 2006

A Bridge Quite Close

With His Mate Wounded, George Tends the Nest

Who would have thought? A pair of eagles - right here next to the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

I am hoping "Martha" recovers and "George" waits for her return.....but, much like people, he probably won't. He'll take up with the renegade female who beat the hell outa Martha, she'll move right in, rearrange seven years worth of branches and sticks and throw Martha's eggs out of the nest.

Eagles aren't the noble birds people think they are. On the contrary, they're nasty scavengers for the most part. Even if Martha hadn't been so rudely and violently removed from the scene by another female, her and George most likely would have trashed at least one of the eaglets themselves by encouraging it to fly too soon. 40% of all eaglets do not survive their first flight. Even before that happened, chances are only one of the two eggs would have survived even that long. Fratricide is common in Eagle-Land. An eaglet's survival is very much based on "the fittest" and parents are quick to allow the stronger/bigger eaglet to kill the smaller/weaker chick. American Bald Eagle - Nesting & Young They steal food, feathers, nest material and other eggs from smaller birds regularly. They're also quite fond of carrion. The fact that they CAN easily kill their own prey doesn't seem to stop them from snatching it from others or taking advantage of road's easier that way. American Bald Eagle - diet and feeding habits Less energy expended and all. Again, much like people.

I'd still like to see one, though. Just because. Knowing the truth may make them less majestic, but they're interesting in spite of their inherent evilness - or maybe because of it.

Maybe this weekend I'll take a short road trip to Maryland.

Blue Ridge

The eagle was thought to be the only animal capable of looking directly into the sun. Aristotle and Pliny wrote of this and added that the eagle tested its young by facing them to the sun, rejecting any that looked away
The Essence of Eagles -

Listen to midnight / at the edge of the eyrie / two egg-teeth chipping

Come carrion hour / each gray-downed half-winged fledgling / turns face to the east

Observe the sunrise / how it blinds men and opens / the eyes of eaglets

No comments: