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Must watch live cam: Bald eagles Jackie and Shadow await hatchlings

Jackie got national attention after that big California winter storm for sitting on her eggs, protecting them from wind and snow for 62 hours.
Posted at 8:19 PM, Feb 22, 2024

It may not look like it, but we can now witness the lovingly contentious squabble of modern domestic life. 

It just so happens that this one takes place 150 feet up in a tree, out in the wilderness of California’s Big Bear Valley.

Welcome to the home of Jackie and Shadow: 

“They're actually really individuals doing their own life with personalities and emotions,” said the executive director at Friends of Big Bear Valley, Sandy Steers.

A 12- and 10-year-old pair of eagle parents are patiently tending to their chicks-to-be.

“And in general, they're doing great. They're switching off on normal days, and Shadow gets his turns, and they switch duties about three or four times a day,” said Steers.

There are two live cameras streaming round-the-clock every day, which has garnered the friends of Big Bear Valley a cult following and given these two a few thousand loyal fans all over the world. 

“We have lots of teachers that are showing the Eagle Cam in classrooms and teaching their students about the eagles and about what it's like, and so that they get connected to nature at a very young age,” said Steers.

Jackie and Shadow are caring for three eggs laid in January and expected to begin hatching late this month into March. 

And what work it is! Jackie got national attention after that big California winter storm for sitting on her eggs, protecting them from wind and snow for 62 hours straight. No breaks. 

“They have waterproof, insulated feathers, so the water just rolls off of them, and they have lots of down underneath. So it's like they're wearing a big parka, their own parka, so they're warm,” said Steers.

The attention is an encouraging sign for conservationists who want to see more public engagement in land and habitat conservation. 

"These cameras are not only sharing the story of these birds and that species, but also the story of climate change,” said Liliana Griego.

Griego volunteers with the Sierra Club chapter in Los Angeles. 

“You can see Big Bear Lake, and you can see the various impacts that these birds are facing as well. So, in the massive storms that we just got, we saw how impactful that’s gonna be and how much stress it’s gonna put on that species, and then on the other end, when we have massive drought, you can see the level of the lake drastically decline. And how is that gonna impact the birds?” said Griego. "Being able to spark that curiosity, to get a glimpse of that magic, does create this sense of responsibility.” 

A noble cause is getting a lift thanks to Jackie, Shadow, and their future hatchlings.

@scrippsnews 🦅 Two bald eagles - Jackie and Shadow - are nestled in a tree in California’s Big Bear Valley awaiting the arrival of their three hatchlings. What’s even better, YOU can follow along 24/7! Click link in bio to follow the journey. #BaldEagle #LiveStream ♬ original sound - Scripps News