WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--For the past two weeks, at the top of a Tulip Poplar tree within the Azalea collection at the U.S. National Arboretum, two fuzzy-grey eaglets have been spending their days snuggling with each other in their nest, eating fresh fish from the Anacostia River, and being coddled by their bald eagle parents, Mr. President & The First Lady.
Millions of people worldwide have been watching and listening to this “First Family” of eagles 24/7 via live-streaming cameras and microphones on www.dceaglecam.org, operated by the American Eagle Foundation (AEF) in partnership with the USDA.
Since hatching, these baby bald eagles have been referred to as DC4 & DC5, but it’s now time to give them two nicknames that are as creative and symbolic as the names of their parents!
Those wishing to participate in the #NameTheNestlings social media campaign should visit the official D.C. Eagle Cam website between April 12-18 for rules & guidelines.
Also, for a limited time, news sites/blogs can embed a promotional live-stream of the DC Eagle Cam on their websites to help spread the word about the naming campaign (click here for embed code)!
"We're very happy that two healthy bald eaglets recently hatched from their eggs and that millions of people are able to watch them grow and be cared for by such wonderful eagle parents," says AEF President Al Cecere. "We're looking forward to all the name ideas that will be suggested and submitted by eagle fans via the Name the Nestlings campaign.”
The five most popular & creative names pair ideas suggested online by the public will go through a final public vote beginning April 24, and will be hosted by the Friends of the National Arboretum.
The winning names will be announced at an event in D.C. at the beginning of May.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
In 2015, the American Eagle Foundation (AEF) staff traveled to D.C. to install state-of-the-art cameras, infrared lighting, and other related equipment in-and-around the nest tree with the help of volunteers and experienced tree arborists and climbers. This past year, the AEF added microphones near the nest to further enhance the viewing experience, and a team of arborists and eagle experts affixed natural tree limbs beneath the nest to provide added support. The USDA’s U.S. National Arboretum ran a half-mile of fiber optic cable to the cameras’ ground control station, which connects the cameras and microphones to the Internet. The entire system is powered by a large mobile solar array (containing several deep cycle batteries) that was designed and built by students and staff from Alfred State College, SUNY College of Technology and was partially funded by the Department of Energy and Environment. USNA has implemented a backup generator that will kick-on if prolonged inclement weather causes the solar array to provide insufficient power to the system. In 2016, APEX Electric Inc. (Kenmore, Washington) traveled to D.C. to assist the AEF in successfully installing audio equipment in and around the tree. The AEF uses Piksel to stream the video images to viewers around the world, and AEF volunteers are trained and coordinated to pan, tilt and zoom the cams, as well as educate the public via LIVE chats while viewers watch the eagles.