Life of the Eagle

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Eagles build their nests, or eyries, atop tall trees, high cliffs and bluffs.

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The female usually lays a clutch of two eggs, though she can lay as many as four. She incubates the eggs for about 40 days by sitting on the nest to keep them warm. Depending upon the climate, incubation can range from 30 to 50 days. Peter Nye, writing about bald eagles in The Journey North, says that males may incubate the eggs too. More commonly, the male takes part in this life cycle stage by catching small mammals to feed to the nesting female.

The newly hatched eaglet's survival depends on its place in the pecking order. After emerging from its egg covered in white fluff, the helpless hatchling is completely dependent upon its mother for food. It weighs about three ounces 85 grams.

Bald Eagle Facts | Life Cycle of Bald Eagles

The first hatchling to emerge from its egg has an age and size advantage over the others in the nest. It grows stronger faster and can compete more successfully for food.

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Later hatching eaglets may starve if they are not feisty enough to compete. Before they "fledge" or leave the nest for the first time, young eagles remain as "nestlings" for 10 to 12 weeks. That is how long it takes for them to become fully feathered enough to fly and large enough to begin hunting for prey. The fledgling eaglet continues to return to the nest and stay around its parents for another month or more, learning how to hunt and refining its flying techniques.

It may beg for food as long as the adult birds are willing to feed it. In all, it will be at least days after birth before the young eagle is totally independent. Even after it has left the nest, the juvenile eaglet faces survival challenges.

The Rebirth of the Eagle

But, many others take the claims as true and subsequently believe that eagles really go through a rebirth process as described. Many times, in order to survive we have to start a change process. We sometimes need to get rid of old memories, habits and other past traditions. Only freed from past burdens, can we take advantage of the present.

The Secret Life of the Circler, Birds. 2018 HD Documentary.

Note that several slightly different versions of the slide presentation are circulating. Detailed Analysis: This rather fanciful tale, which circulates in the form of a slide presentation, claims that eagles can live for up to 70 years if they go through a prolonged and painful process of rebirth during their 40th year. Eagles do not undergo the process of rebirth described in the slide show.

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In fact, the story is simply an allegory about change and does not reflect the real life cycle of eagles. Presumably, the creator of the slide show invented the eagle rebirth story as a means of illustrating his or her concepts regarding the role of change in our lives.

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  • Unfortunately, the author has presented the rebirth story as if it was factual and therefore many recipients tend to take it literally. Of course a closer review soon reveals the absurdity of the tale. The story does not explain how the eagle could possibly survive without food or water for the five months of its transformation. And its feathers are also continually replaced.

    Eagle Sayings and Quotes

    The American Bald Eagle Information website notes :. Exposure and starvation would overcome the eagle long before a physical renewal could occur. Eagles molt in patches, taking almost half a year to replace feathers, starting with the head and working downward. Not all feathers are replaced in a given molt. Bald eagles typically live between twenty and thirty years in the wild. The lifespan of other species of eagles may vary, although none are known to reach seventy years in the wild. There are, however, plenty of reliable sources that dismiss the story as a foolish hoax.

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    Rebirth stories, such as that of the mythical phoenix rising from the ashes of its funeral pyre, have been part of human cultures for thousands of years. The philosophical message behind the story — that we often need to undergo a painful and prolonged process of change in our lives in order to spiritually grow and move forward — is certainly worth heeding.

    However, the nonsensical story used as a vehicle for the message all but destroys its credibility.