Pass out the first round of cigars.
The wait is over for one of Alcoa’s eaglets.
Company spokesman John Riches said that one of the eaglets began working its way out of its egg earlier in the day, and by 6 p.m. Saturday, it was all the way out of the shell.
“Officially, I saw the hole in the egg around 9 or 10 this morning,” Riches said Saturday night.
“At about 6 or so, I could tell it was all the way out of the shell,” he said. “I think it had been out for a while, but that was the first time I could confirm it was out.”
If both eggs hatch and both eaglets thrive, these will qualify as eight eaglets for the eagle couple that has used the nest the past four years.
“Eagles pick a nest and use it over and over,” Riches said.
“This couple had three eaglets last year and all survived,” he said. “The year before, there were two eggs. Both hatched, but one eaglet failed to thrive, while the other survived. The year before that, before we had the camera up there, we don’t know how many eggs they had, but they had two eaglets that survived.”
Riches said the two eggs in the nest were laid about three days apart, “so there’s a good chance the second eaglet could hatch out in the next few days. It’s really exciting.”
The website where the eagles can be watched live averaged about 200-300 visitors at any one time during the past week, he said. Saturday afternoon, the average was about 1,300 people watching at any one time.
“We had almost 12 million hits to the website last year,” Riches said. “We’ve had just short of 2 million so far this year, but I think we’ll get there in the next day or two. There will be something to see, and it will be fun to watch what happens over the next several days.”
People can suggest names for the eaglets on Alcoa’s Facebook and Twitter feeds, as well leave comments and suggestions on the website at alcoa.com/eaglecam.