Written By: Jim Wright for Duke Farms and Conserve Wildlife Foundation
Our story thus far: Both eaglets hatched toward the end of March, making them both more than three weeks old. You can view the nest on streaming video here.
For many Eagle Cam viewers these days, the big question is: “What’s in store next for the two eaglets?”
For answers to this and other pressing questions, we asked Larissa Smith, Wildlife Biologist/Volunteer Manager for Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey.
“At about four weeks of age the chicks will begin to get their blood feathers or pin feathers, first appearing on the head and edge of their wings,” says Larissa, who has worked with Bald Eagles for the past 15 years.
“The chicks’ new feathers come out wrapped in a sheath that is filled with blood and the blood feeds the feathers so they grow.
“Eventually, once the feather is fully developed, the sheath will fall off or the eaglet will pull it off and the feather will unfurl.”
For the next few weeks after the pin feathers emerge, the chicks will have a mixture of down and feathers. At six weeks of age, biologists will band the chicks. Continue reading