I will admit that even as a well-seasoned eagle nest watcher, that I became a little concerned at the absence of the parents for so long today. Then, I set my emotions aside.
This will happen from here on out as the young are getting big enough that they can be alone for several hours. They can even go several hours without food now. This happens in many nests all the time.
For many eagle can watchers they get used to what happens at one nest. For example, the nest cam that National Eagle Center friend Bob Anderson runs for the Raptor Resource Project in Decorah Iowa. The parents are almost always there at the nest site. There always seems to be an abundance of food in the nest. The chicks almost always have nice full crops. By the way, remember the crop stores the food, and shows up as a bulge on the upper chest of the bird. We have to remember that the Decorah eagles have an abundance of food sources close to home. They live next to a fish hatchery. They live next to a stream. They live near a road where they can collect road kill. It's like they live next to a supermarket!
What we are watching is typical of many eagles across this country. Food is harder to come by. They have to work harder to find food for themselves and their young. This means that they may need to roam farther to find that food. This also means that they may be gone for longer periods of time. This is natural.
We all care for this family of eagles.
Mother Nature knows what to do.