We are seeing a very interesting situation at the Upper Mississippi Fulton eaglecam nest this year. Three adults working cooperatively on nestorations, often with all three on the nest at the same time! The eaglecam is provided by the Stewards of the Upper Mississippi River Refuge organization and can be watched here: http://stewardsumrr.org/webcams/bald-eagle-nest/ There is also some history info about the nest and cams below the button to bring up the cam feed.
In addition, one of our eagleholic friends, Sunnie Day, has done research into just how often this happens (three eagle parents) and mentioned what she found recently on Facebook (included with her permission)
“Doing research I came up with a list a couple of years ago of about 10 nests documented of bald eagle cooperative pairs. It has also been documented in Red Tails, Kestrels, many others. Probably the most photographed besides the Catalina ones was the Llano, Texas pair, and the Montezuma Refuge of New York ones in which 2 of that pair were actually hacked eagles from their program. There was other documentation in the Aleutian Islands, Washington State, James River area of VA., Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge in TN., to name a few. I have about 10 in all, but I am sure there are more I do not have on my list.”
Will this be something we see more and more often as the eagle population increases? How will this trio handle nest duties? We’ll just have to wait and watch!