A pair of four-week-old eaglets in a Cootes Paradise nest appear to be healthy and growing.
According to RBG Species at Risk Biologist Kathryn Harrison who does regular checks on the babies, they have survived their first month with flying colours.
Harrison says anything could happen in the first few months of life, making them the most critical.
"What can happen is, they'll have multiple young but they want to play the odds of getting the best offspring," says Harrison. "If there's not a lot of food available then you might have the mother preferentially feeding one of them over the other."
The babies were born just before Easter and are in a nest in a tree 30 meters up. If the babies can survive the first few weeks, life can still get tricky despite not having many predators.
Eaglet diet: fish mostly but also mice, muskrats and even a duck
"An issue would be the competition between the siblings or the limited amount of food," says Harrison. "Which is not the case here, we should have a lot of fish coming into the fish way, and the marsh is a good place for food."
Things like windstorms or something that could blow the nest down, and falling out of the nest would be also a threat to the eaglets. "In some cases one might push the other one out of the nest," says Harrison.
Both parents will stick around to help raise the eaglets. As one stays at the nest to protect their young and keep potential threats away, the other goes out to hunt.
"Fish is the majority of their diet, but they'll eat pretty much anything," explains Harrison. "You'll see them diving for mice or muskrats, they even had a duck in the fall."
A full-grown bald eagle can grow to be three feet from head to tail, and between six to eight feet wingspan, making them a big animal and top predator.
Eaglets Time Line
The eggs were laid mid-February, and approximately 35 days later they hatched. From hatching it's over two months (70 days) before they leave the nest. Once they leave the nest, they still need parental care for about another month until they're full-grown, and then they'll be off on their own.
Lake Ontario shortens life span
Bald Eagles live between 15-25 years, however "lifespan is reduced in Lake Ontario to about eight to 12 years," says Harrison. "Because of the water quality and the fish."
"Eagles are a top predator, so they're going to feed on things that are feeding on things, that are feeding on things, and basically you have bio accumulation," explains Harrison. "Every one small fish is going to eat a lot of other things, and then the bigger fish is going to have eaten a lot of small fish that are going to have a lot of contaminates, and it just builds up.
"Lake Ontario is a good spot, but still there's a lot of challenges in general when you have a population like Southern Ontario, and you have things like contaminates that go into the water," says Harrison.