A Bald Eagle juvenile is pictured on its nest at Heritage Park, Kirkland Washington in this photograph taken June 21, 2013 and released to Reuters June 27, 2013.
Credit: Reuters/Mick Thompson/Handout
A spokeswoman for the local National Audubon Society chapter said the two eaglets, still too young to fly, might be so startled by the pyrotechnics that they would jump out of their nest and plunge to the ground, leaving them injured or vulnerable to predators.
The fledgling national symbols, apparently unaware they are complicating the Independence Day festivities in the city of Kirkland, east of Seattle, currently spend their days perched in a tall lakeside Douglas fir in the town’s Heritage Park.
They are believed to be six to eight weeks old, and probably won’t start to fly until the beginning of August, said Mary Brisson, a board member and spokeswoman for Eastside Audubon.
The town’s annual fireworks usually are set off from a barge floating in the lake near the park, and Brisson said her group recently asked that the display be moved from its traditional location for the sake of the young raptors. Organizers agreed.
As a result, the pyrotechnics company will relocate its launch site some 350 yards (meters) farther away from the nest, said Penny Sweet, founder of the civic group, Celebrate Kirkland, which oversees the fireworks.
The company also promised to tailor next Thursday’s show to emphasize visual displays with less explosive noise to further minimize disturbing the eagle family.