Over the past couple of summers the eagles at Norfolk Botanical Garden have had a prime spot with a widget on Caffeinated Politics. Through the triumphs of eggs hatching, and young eaglets growing and leaving the nest to the sad times of the death of the female and the removal of the young, readers and viewers have had a front row seat to Mother Nature.
But that will no longer be the case at Norfolk Botanical Garden due to the safety factor for the eagles due to the close proximity to the local airport. Too many mishaps are taking place, and it has generated enough concern that the eagle nests have been taken down.
While this sad, it is also wise.
Federal, state and local wildlife officials said one complete nest and a partial nest had to be taken down because of the danger to wildlife and aircraft coming and going from nearby Norfolk International Airport.
The FAA cited concerns about four bald eagles being struck by aircraft in the last 10 years. The USDA identified bald eagles as “an extremely high” hazard risk to aircraft.
The city applied for state and federal permits to remove the nests before nesting season begins in the next few months. The permits came in this week.
A post on the City of Norfolk Facebook page said “While we all have enjoyed the eagle’s at Norfolk Botanical Garden, encouraging them to find a new home ultimately ensures the safety of the public, property and the eagles.”
The removal didn’t take long – perhaps 5 minutes – because the nests weren’t as intricately-built as they expected. The branches were put into a chipper and ground up.