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BARRINGTON, Ill. (CBS) – Two bald eaglets that tumbled down with their storm-damaged nest in Kane County this spring are now juveniles and ready for the real world.
Now, for the first time ever in the Chicago area, bald eaglets raised in captivity will be released in the wild in less than two weeks.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Steve Miller reports, the launch date is Saturday, Nov. 12, at Starved Rock State Park, for the two eaglets that went down with their storm-tossed nest in Kane County this spring.
“We’re really confident that they are ready,” said Dawn Keller, founder and director of Barrington-based Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation. “They’re very smart and they’re just really beautifully large and strong birds.”
Flint Creek took them in after their parents rejected them.
“These are the first eagles – eaglets – that have been raised in captivity in the Chicago area,” Keller said.
She said Flint Creek has an adult bald eagle that acts as a surrogate parent to the eaglets. Does she think he will he be sorry to see the juveniles leave?
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Steve Miller reports
“No, actually, I don’t. They steal his food. I think he may be happy to see them go, to be honest,” Keller said.
Keller said that scavenging is a step toward learning to hunt.
Never before have eaglets been raised in captivity in the Chicago area, according to Keller.
“So this is really a first time for all of us and we are excited,” Keller said. “Because they’re really just making a comeback in the Chicago area. Even in the last couple of years we’ve only started seeing nesting pairs in the Chicago area.”
Keller put the cost of raising the two bald eagles at $20,000.