WESTMINSTER, Colo. — A year after tragedy struck their nest, the Standley Lake bald eagles have welcomed a new addition to their family.
Nest-watchers reported an egg hatching Monday. The mama eagle, known as F420, was attempting to feed the newest eaglet that afternoon, according to the Standley Lake Eagles Facebook group.
It'll be another week or two before any eaglet peeks over the nest rim, so it's still unclear how many are in the nest. The eagle mama laid between one and three eggs.
> Video above: This female mystery eagle is no nest wrecker, aired in April 2020.
The Standley Lake eagles are among dozens of breeding pairs in the region. According to a Colorado Parks and Wildlife, there are 122 bald eagle nests in the northeast portion of the state.
That was a huge increase from the end of the 1970s, when Colorado had only three known bald eagle nests, and none on the Front Range.
The Standley Lake nest became well-known in recent years due to a live camera installed in 2016 that allowed anyone in the world to watch the eagles' daily lives.
F420 and her beau suffered tragedy last May when the tree that supported their nest split down the middle, causing the nest to collapse and killing their lone offspring.
After the nest collapse, F420 and the father built a new nest deeper in the wildlife refuge where cameras don't reach. The park now has a live camera that points at Bird Island.
Anyone looking for a nonintrusive way to watch a bald eagle nest should check out the Fort Saint Vrain eagle nest on the live Xcel Eagle Cam. Mama eagle was incubating three eggs that could hatch at any time.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife said that people who travel to see a nest need to follow Leave No Trace principles:
- Stay on designated trails. Be aware of closed sections of trails that are in place to protect nesting locations.
- Keep a proper buffer distance from wildlife. If you're altering the behavior of the animal, you're too close. Use a telephoto lens to "get closer."
- Don't feed or bait wildlife to attract them.
- Don't use recorded calls to attract birds to an area.
- Don't alter the scene for a photo (or for any reason). Leave all objects, leaves, branches, rocks, etc. where they are.
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