Get your eagle eyes ready: The bald eagles of California’s Santa Cruz Island have returned to their nests. And once again, the egg-olution will again be televised.
As in years past, a webcam set up by scientists from the Institute for Wildlife Studies (IWS) is streaming live footage of eagles K-10 and K-26 as they incubate eggs in their Pelican Harbor nest. And an avid following of eagle enthusiasts are sharing in the excitement in an online discussion board.
The female being followed by the web cam — K-26 — has just laid her second egg! Scientists are predicting even more eggs this year than usual from the island’s nesting bald eagle pairs, which could mean more hope for the birds’ growing population on Santa Cruz Island. The eagles largely disappeared from the Channel Islands in the 1960s and 1970s, but the IWS, National Park Service and The Nature Conservancy started reintroducing bald eagle chicks to the area in 2002.
As the eagles’ numbers continue to grow, The Nature Conservancy’s three decades of work in the Channel islands come closer to restoring Santa Cruz Island to its full ecological health. Now, people everywhere have the opportunity to watch conservation in action. Check back on Cool Green Science and nature.org for updates on the eagles’ progress.
(Image credit: Tim Wolcott.)