An unusual bald eagle family has lately gone viral on the internet. Not only have netizens been perplexed, but bird specialists have been as well. These three eagles in Illinois opted to raise their offspring as a family, despite the fact that they are a monogamous species (they routinely choose a lifetime spouse).
In their now-famous nest along the Upper Mississippi River near Fulton, two bald eagle males and one female are rearing three eaglets. Despite bald eagles’ proclivity for life partners, this isn’t the first time a rare incident like this has occurred. The first bald eagle nesting trio was discovered in California in 1992.
Despite this, bird scientists are at a loss to explain the highly unusual event. Their background is convoluted, just like their relationship, according to Bird Watcher’s Digest’s blog. “As in past years, the three parents split incubation tasks for the eggs — three this year.”
The parenting responsibilities are split evenly among the three parents. “They all share parental responsibilities,” said Ally Hirschlag, a reporter with the National Audubon Society conservation group. “They’re all feeding the kids.” They’ve all taken a seat on the nest. They keep an eye on the children. They alternate roles. In fact, it’s rather sophisticated.”
The trio has been observed together since 2018, according to the Stewards of the Upper Mississippi River Refuge, a nonprofit group that oversees the uncommon bird family and offers a livestream of them. Take a look at the amazing tale below!