Officials: First bald eagle nest discovered on Cape Cod in 115 years

BARNSTABLE, MASS. (WHDH) - The first bald eagle nest with eggs was recently spotted on Cape Cod in more than 100 years, in addition to eight other new nests that were documented across the Bay State, the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife announced Wednesday.

“MassWildlife has seen a dramatic uptick in newly documented eagle nests this year and has confirmed nine new nests in Fitchburg, Wenham, Concord, Rutland, Wareham, Medford, Northampton, Hudson, and Barnstable,” state officials said in a news release.

The Barnstable nest marks the first nest seen on Cape Cod in 115 years. That last one was documented in Sandwich in 1905.

There have been over 70 active eagle nests documented in Massachusetts this spring.

As the eagle population continues to grow, officials say new challenges have emerged as pairs try to establish new territories.

“This spring marked the first documented case of eagles nesting on Martha’s Vineyard. An eagle pair took over an osprey nest and were incubating eggs when the ospreys returned from their wintering grounds,” officials said. “The osprey pair that most likely built the nest harassed the incubating eagle who would flip upside down with its talons in the air in defense. Eventually, the eagle cracked the eggs doing this, and this historic nesting attempt failed.”

Officials say two other eagle nests on the mainland have also failed as a result of an intruding eagle invading the territory and killing the chicks in the nest.

Despite the incidents, all signs point to a thriving eagle population in Massachusetts, according to MassWildlife.

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