Found family is one of the tropes that I find very enjoyable; stories like this are very heartwarming, and they just have a way of tugging at everyone’s heartstrings.
The main characters are usually humans though. I mean, fiction is kinda catered to human audiences. But what’s more lovely than found family in fiction? Real-life stories that transcend even species boundaries.
For our story today, we have a found family between two birds of prey of different species.
As you could probably guess from the photo I used above, our story today features the majestic Bald Eagle, one of the top birds of prey in the whole world.
There have been rumours about bald eagles being able to carry off babies, but those are simply stories. According to Forest Wildlife, bald eagles are only able to carry a third of their usual 10-12 pound weight, so that means that the average weight that a bald eagle can carry is only 3-4 pounds. So, no, they can’t carry little babies— human babies that is.
One particular eagle caught a baby hawk in Canada in hopes of feeding her eaglets. At least, that was the original plan. GROWLS, a non-profit organization for the wildlife and their habitats on Gabriola Island, British Columbia, has an Eagle Nest Cam which is a live broadcast open for viewing to anyone interested, and they were able to catch and keep track of this amazing interaction, to the delight of their viewers!
Was it intended to be a kill lesson? I’d rather not think about that possibility. All that matters at this time is that it looks like the baby hawk has been accepted by the eagle family!
A week after the hawklet, named Malala, was brought into the eagle’s nest, it looks like the little birds are getting along so well that the two even share meals peacefully with each other.
“It gives me delight, it gives me joy, it gives me hope,” said GROWLS Director Pam McCartney on the peculiar feathered family.
Surprisingly, this isn’t the first case of an eagle family raising a hawk. Spunky, another eagle-adopted hawk in Sidney, B.C., was the center of attention back in 2017. And in 2019, Tuffy also caused quite a stir when they successfully fledged from their eagle nest.
Malala and her family got their picture taken by director and eagle nest monitor Sharron Palmer-Hunt, and they all look good! One person commented, “Different and diversified, yet how beautiful it is they can coexist together happily!”
After spending a little less than a month in the bald eagle’s nest, Malala was reported to have fledged. Other than a post by Sharron Palmer-Hunt of Malala looking so beautiful, there’s been no new update regarding the little hawk ever since her fledged, but let’s all hope that her continues to have great luck and that we hopefully see her soon!
Watch Malala grow up in the eagle’s nest in the video below.