The DC Arboretum Eagle Nest Cam Project
Nature at its Very Best
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This is the nest of Bald Eagles Mr. President and The First Lady, a mated pair living in the most idyllic of nest sites within Washington, DC, high in a Tulip Poplar tree amongst the Azalea Collection at the U.S. National Arboretum.
We leave this season with memories of our special eagle family—smiles and tears both in abundance. A caveat on the DC cam page cautions: “This is a wild eagle nest and anything can happen. While we hope that all eaglets hatched in this nest will grow up healthy and successfully fledge each season, things like sibling rivalry, predators, and natural disaster can affect this eagle family and may be difficult to watch.” Never before has that warning hit so hard as it did this season.
Two eaglets, Victory and Valor, the 6th and 7th eaglets hatched in this nest on April 30 and May 3, 2018, were raised from tiny newly-hatched nestlings to strong and mighty eaglets, both on the cusp of fledging.
Mr. President and The First Lady are skilled, devoted, and protective parents. They both brooded the eggs, provided plenty of food for the eaglets, and ensured that their offspring would grow up safe from any intruders who ventured close to the nest.
Victory and Valor
Victory fledged first on July 12, albeit accidentally, then returned to the nest the next day, and later practiced making more and more flights, honing skills that he or she would need in the wild.
Valor, the second eaglet, also fledged accidentally when he slipped from a branch on July 26. Things did not go well after that. Several days after the event, Valor was caught up and eventually ended up at Tri State Bird Rescue & Research, where the seriousness of his condition was confirmed. August 7th marked a very difficult day for the AEF and our many supporters, followers, and friends of the DC Eagle Cam family. Words are not enough to convey the sadness we felt for the loss of our precious eaglet, Valor, who contracted West Nile virus and suffered catastrophic neurological damage. While in the nest, Valor showed no symptoms, so it is possible the disease was contracted after the fall. Read a memorial tribute to Valor.
Victory learned to fly with confidence and was seen by Arboretum staff hunting alone and also following Mr. President. He or she was last seen on August 18th, flying into the distance and out of sight.
While Mr. President and The First Lady may stay close in the area even in the off season, neither has been seen in the nest since August 21, and we assume they are off on adventures unknown to us. We wish them safe travels and look forward to seeing them return to the nest probably in December.
Posting Videos and Photos from AEF Cams
AEF invites anyone to post photo and video screenshots/screen-recordings captured from these high definition cams. Since these photos and videos can be copied and duplicated over and over, we request that when you post these up to Facebook, IG, Websites, Blogs, or another social media location, the following information be included at the end of your photo/video caption: © 2018 American Eagle Foundation, EAGLES.ORG. These live feeds are the intellectual property of the AEF, and we kindly request that you do not attempt to embed or live stream these feeds on your website, blog, app, etc., or attempt to monetize screen shots or video captures. Thank you for your cooperation!
Photos, Videos, and Event Log from the Current Season
Previous Nesting Seasons
If you have a concern, we ask that you email firstname.lastname@example.org rather than call the AEF or the National Arboretum. Thank you for your cooperation.
Live Q & AOpen Live Q & A
Our DC Live Q & A has ended for the season.
Facebook Live Nest Cams
As Seen On
About the DC Eagle Cam Project
In 2015, American Eagle Foundation staff traveled to DC to install state-of-the-art cameras, infrared lighting, and other related equipment in and around the nest tree with the help of volunteers and experienced tree climbers. The USDA’s U.S. National Arboretum ran a half-mile of fiber optic cable to the cameras’ ground control station, which connects the cameras to the internet. The entire system is powered by a large mobile solar array (containing several deep-cycle batteries) that was designed and built by students and staff from Alfred State College and SUNY College of Technology, and was partially funded by the Department of Energy and Environment. USNA has implemented a backup generator that will kick in if prolonged inclement weather causes the solar array to provide insufficient power to the system. In 2016, APEX Electric, Inc. (Kenmore, Washington) traveled to DC to assist the AEF in successfully installing audio equipment in and around the nest tree.
In 2017, a microphone was installed, further enhancing the experience for our viewers. It was a treat hearing the sounds of the nest tree, especially the vocalizations of the eagles.
In 2018, new cams with more powerful zoom were installed in the off-season, which gave our remote camera operators the ability to zoom to the Anacostia River and Kingman Island, where Mr. President and The First Lady hunt.
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THE AMERICAN EAGLE FOUNDATION is a public 501(c)3 charitable organization. Contributions to the American Eagle Foundation are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. The AEF’s Tax ID Number is 58-1652023.
If you would like to donate specifically to the DC Eagle Cam Project, please make sure to use our DC Eagle Cam Donation item on www.eagles.org so we can make sure to allocate 100% of your donation to the operating costs of this project.
A Brief History of This Nest
In 2015, Mr. President & The First Lady successful raised one eaglet (DC1) before there were any cameras in their nest tree.
In 2016, the American Eagle Foundation, in partnership with the DC Arboretum and others, began streaming this nest in high definition video. It was an instant Internet success, with millions of viewers watching little eaglets grow and develop into strong eagles. A chat feature welcomed and educated viewers, and the success of this project made headlines around the nation. You can view archived accounts of the previous seasons 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018.