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Intruder kills mother eagle, eaglet at Sandy Ridge Reservation nest (UPDATED)

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    In a bird cam screen grab, a male bald eagle and chick are seen in their Sandy Ridge Reservation nest after the resident female had been driven off the nest in an attack by another female eagle, who later returned Sunday and took the chick.



UPDATE: The eagles are continuing their pairing, said Josh Michalski, the national resource land steward for Lorain County Metroparks.

“They’ve still got to get used to each other,” he said Friday.

Their pairing will continue in earnest next January or February, and will be evident by them gathering material for their own nest.

NORTH RIDGEVILLE — A female bald eagle and one of her eaglets at Sandy Ridge Reservation have died — and the female responsible may be taking up with the newly widowed male eagle.

The female eagle nesting at Sandy Ridge was found injured Saturday on a road in the North Ridgeville-Avon area, says Lorain County Metro Parks Senior Naturalist Tim Fairweather. She was taken to Lake Erie Nature and Science Center, where she died. Some of the injuries appear to have been from an attack by another eagle.

“She was just too far gone,” Fairweather said. “She might have been hit by a car, too.”

Sunday, the male eagle was feeding an eaglet when a female eagle came to the nest, fought the male and took off with and killed the eaglet. Fairweather said the female eagle didn’t appear to be banded, and he didn’t know where she came from, but she’s already taken up with the male. In fact, Fairweather said they are “pair bonding,” a courtship ritual between eagles that are coupling.

Eagles have been nesting at Sandy Ridge since 2002, and this isn’t the first time a female interloper has come into the nest and attacked.

“These things do happen, and with cameras in the nest now and the advent of social media, it’s a lot easier to see,” he said.

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