A heartbreaking update to the bald eagle situation at Standley Lake Regional Park.
Last week, a beloved pair of bald eagles at Standley Lake Regional Park in Westminster was attacked by a floater female eagle. During the attack, the mother eagle was injured and has since disappeared, though park officials believe she's holed up somewhere healing from her wounds. The father eagle continued to incubate the eggs, and fend off the interference of the floater eagle.
The eagles have nested there for about 5 years, and have been featured on the park’s live feed Eagle Cam, gaining a loyal group of followers, who have been eagerly awaiting the hatching of three eggs laid in March.
That time finally came on April 12, when one of the eggs hatched. The father eagle tended to the baby, only being able to leave the nest for very short periods of time. He caught food to feed the eaglet, however, the floater eagle swooped in and snatched it away, leaving dad in a bind and unable to feed himself or the baby.
The baby’s peeps could be heard on the live feed, delighting those who have tuned into the dramatic scenario:
Sadly, the park staff recently announced that the eaglet had not moved all morning and passed away. The park’s announcement stated that the cold temperatures and snow from the recent storm may have contributed to the already precarious situation.
The park cannot interfere in these situations and asks that no one else tries to do so either.
“This is not just a suggestion, bald eagles are federally protected and it is illegal to provide food even if you mean well, which so many of you do. Many professionals are providing insight to this situation including wildlife managers from Colorado Parks and Wildlife and numerous biologists who have studied bald eagles extensively, so please be assured that we are doing the best of our ability to stay informed and act accordingly."
We, like all of you, are pretty devasted at this news. We had grown attached to the eagles and hoped for a healthy eaglet to survive.
Those interested can continue to watch the situation on the live cam to see if the mother eagle will return and what will happen with the floater eagle. The park has posted some FAQ information online about bald eagles and how these scenarios happen as part of the natural world.
Have you been following the saga of the eagles at Standley Lake? Let us know how you feel about all this in the comments.