The timing could not have been better for the Easter holiday -- a bald eagle pair has returned to their nest in a restricted area of Anthony Chabot Regional Park, and after some remodeling to enlarge the home, they appear to have two newly hatched chicks, according to Wildlife Program Manager Doug Bell. Park staff and volunteers have been monitoring the nest since March.
The nest is in Lake Chabot Regional Park, in a restricted area of the park. Perched in a dense eucalyptus grove, it is hard to see, but may be visible with a scope or binoculars from across the lake. From West Shore Trail, look across the lake to eucalyptus trees on the peninsula in the area between Half Moon Cove and Bass Cove. From the dam you can see the adult bald eagles flying to and from the nest. Viewing may be better from a boat on the lake.
"This is now a mature, six-year-old female eagle, and she has successfully raised a chick here the last two years,” said Bell. “We ask that eagle-watchers stay on the trail or in their boats, so please observe our rules to protect the birds.
Landing on shore in the restricted areas at Lake Chabot is not allowed.”
Landing boats on shore or entering restricted areas of the parks is prohibited, and violators will be cited.
More information about bald eagles in the East Bay Regional Parks is on the Park District web site, ebparks.org.
Bald eagles have been observed in past years flying over and around Lake Chabot, and in February 2012 they built a nest for the first time. One juvenile bald eagle hatched in 2012, and a second one, raised in a different nest fledged in 2013.
We estimate the adult pair began incubation in March. Incubation lasts approximately 33 days. Our first observation of young in the nest was on April 16; it appears that there are two chicks.
If all goes well, we may expect fledging in early July, so there is plenty of time for the public to view the eagles’ nesting progress at Lake Chabot from the recommended observation points, according to Bell.
Bald eagles are not listed as endangered or threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, however they are protected by the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, and they are still listed as State Endangered in California.
Lake Chabot Regional Park, located at 17600 Lake Chabot Road, Castro Valley, CA, offers boat rentals, and other recreational facilities.
The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) is a system of beautiful public parks and trails in Alameda and Contra Costa counties east of San Francisco. The system comprises 113,000+ acres in 65 parks including over 1,200 miles of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding and nature study.