HOLDERNESS — A pair of bald eagles nesting on an island in Squam Lake is raising three eaglets this year. The nest, located on Long Island in the middle of the lake, is viewable on special lake tours conducted by Squam Lakes Natural Science Center. Bald eagles have nested on the lake since 2003 and have been very successful in the number of chicks reared.
This is the third set of triplets raised in this nest in the last four years, making it one of the most productive nests in the state.
Iain MacLeod, executive director of the Science Center and a raptor expert has been monitoring the success of this pair and other Lakes Region eagles for several years. Last year the pair failed in their nesting attempt during a day-long ice storm in April, so MacLeod is delighted to see them bounce back this year.
"The pair chose a new, more sheltered nest site than the one they have used in previous years, perhaps because of the ice-storm trauma in 2013, said MacLeod. "The pair was incubating eggs in their new nest by April 1 (which is a couple weeks later than normal) and hatched their first chick by the first week of May," he added. The chicks are now within a couple week of taking their first flights and the nest is getting crowded reports MacLeod. "As far as we know this is the only bald eagle nest in the state with triplets," added MacLeod.
The Science Center runs Explore Squam cruises every day at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3p.m. through the middle of October as well as additional Nature of the Lakes cruises on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 4 p.m. through the end of August. The 3 p.m. cruise on Mondays and Fridays are special Loon Cruises in partnership with the Loon Preservation Committee. The bald eagle nest is a stop for all Squam Lake Cruises.
For cruise details including pricing please visit http://www.nhnature.org/programs/lake_cruises.php or call 603-968-7194.