Faithful and Patient

Enduring the elements with determination.

Enduring the elements with determination.

Those are the two words that best describe Jim and Cindy as the incubate the clutch of eggs in their nest…faithful and patient.

I learn a lot about myself from watching the eagles as they simply do what has to be done. (Wildlife is like that, instinctively driven by needs and necessities without all of the frills and extras that we seem to demand.) And there are so many lessons to be learned in life, so many obstacles to be conquered, so many challenges to be met. It seems that we human beings are the most fickle, stubborn creatures on the planet. We tend to focus on what we feel that we deserve more than what we need, and our estimate of what we deserve is usually highly exaggerated.

For the past four winters I have watched Jim and Cindy share the burden of incubation duty. For the past four winters they have impressed me with their determination to be successful in this all-important endeavor. It seems like every year there comes a day or two when the eagle in the aerie is completely covered by a late winter snowfall. Eventually the snow-ladened adult will stir a little creating the illusion that the snow in the nest is alive and breathing. With that movement you are able to catch a glimpse of that beautiful white head, bright yellow beak and piercing yellow eyes before it once again becomes an inanimate pile of snow. Eventually it will ruffle its feathers and scatter clumps of the white blanket to the floor of the nest. Only when it finally stands to carefully reposition the eggs does it actually shake off its wintry mantle. Then, ever so gently, it will slowly settle back down upon the precious clutch.

Yesterday was one of those days.

By this afternoon the sun finally managed to burn through the shroud of heavy clouds hanging low in the sky, if only for a few minutes. Huge clumps of snow leaping from tree limbs created the appearance of a magical rainfall of marshmallows. As we watched the nest, two Red Tails circled gracefully in the intermittent sunbeams and a lone coyote prowled the perimeter of the well field, pausing for a few moments to watch us watch him before dashing into the shadows of the underbrush. Gradually the distant aerie began to resemble an aerie once again and the sunlight revealed a lone, damp Bald Eagle faithfully protecting her hidden treasure and patiently waiting for the kiss of spring.

Published in: on March 8, 2013 at 3:54 am  Comments (6)  

6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Mr. Garber, Roger, if I may, is so talented and it is wonderful to find a ,another human being that loves life and its abundant qualities as much as I do, Birdwatching is a favorite hobby of mine and I intend to follow Jim and Cindy for another year.

  2. Hello, I’ve been concerned because yesterday we weren’t able to get the eagle cam to come up in the afternoon. They were both down and not operating. I checked first thing this morning and it still isn’t working. The falcon cam was working yesterday but it isn’t working today. Didn’t know if Boonshoft was aware of this or not. Sure hope they get it up and running again! So excited about watching the eagles….

  3. Of course you may Janet. His camera expertise is totally selftaught too, but (and he will be the first to tell you) his love for nature and his talent for capturing the images for all of us are God-given blessings. Those images are stunning.

  4. Thank you Opal. We have noticed the problem too and the problem is being addressed. I am hoping that it is a technical issue with the feed, since it has affected both cameras, as the ground near the cameras and overhead cabling will be too soggy to support the weight of a bucket truck for quite a while.

  5. I was concerned about Jim and Cindy since we had the snow storm.But I also knew you would be giving us an update as soon as possible. It’s so amazing the dedication that Jim and Cindy have to their precious eggs and the picture is beautiful. The winter can be cold and harsh to our eagles but the eggs are safe and warm. Thanks eaglejim!!! Polly.

  6. I am sure that they appreciate your concern Polly. The weather will be vastly improving this weekend, of course there are still those springs storms to get us all worried again.

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