A family drama is unfolding in an eagle’s nest near Washington D.C.’s Woodrow Wilson Bridge. A male bald eagle, nicknamed “George,” has been left alone in the care of a nest of near-hatchlings. His mate, nicknamed “Martha,” is recovering at a wildlife rehabilitation center after she was attacked by another female bald eagle (who was apparently not given a nickname, so I’ll call her “J. Lo”).
The tussle between Martha and J. Lo may be a somewhat common occurrence in the wild — the increased density of eagle populations has given us a more intimate look into their lives as they nest closer to human civilization. NPR’s Weekend Edition interviewed Craig Koppie, an endangered species biologist, about the incident:
I’m afraid [George] has got a deck stacked against him …. The timing of this episode is such that the eaglets are starting to hatch …. If the bird, George, needs to leave the nest for any time, these birds will be wet, and it only takes, you know, a half hour, if that, and that birds will be chilled, and expire.
Unfortunately, George may have already blown it — he recently left the nest to fly out to Hollywood and pitch his story as a heartwarming family dramedy (“It’s Mr. Mom meets March of the Penguins …”)