This post from March 7 has been updated.
While Liberty and Justice are celebrating the hatching of their latest offspring, across town at the National Arboretum, the waiting continues for The First Lady and Mr. President to get it into gear.
The first of L&J’s two eggs hatched Saturday, as seen in this video:
The family is nesting above the D.C. police academy in Southwest Washington. Observers are waiting to see if the second egg will pip.
But at the arboretum, the waiting is to see if an egg will even be laid.
Mr. P, like a certain other president, seems to be using the Twitter account as a tool of persuasion.
But apparently, The First Lady has not been moved. In fact, she is instead working on her yoga moves.
Eagle experts can only speculate on what is, or isn’t, going on. Wildlife experts say Mr. President and The First Lady are very late in their typical egg-laying cycle this season.
“It’s a little puzzling,” as to why she has not laid eggs yet, said Dan Rauch, the District’s wildlife biologist.
One theory is there has been another woman or, rather another female bald eagle, that has been hanging around the nest. That female bird has been trying to get the eagle eye of Mr. President, Rauch said, but to no avail.
“She’s been trying to woo him,” Rauch said. “He’s quite a catch” as far as male bald eagles go. He is a good hunter, and he has got a great nesting spot at the arboretum.
At times, Rauch said the other female eagle has followed Mr. President around to “try to get him to interact with her.”
“She was really trying,” Rauch said. Mr. President was not interested and eventually got tired of it. “He didn’t chase her off, but he wasn’t interested.”
Where was The First Lady when the wooing was going on? She was away from the nest, experts said.
On Tuesday, the young female eagle was again back at the nest, vying for the attention of Mr. President. Some had jokingly nicknamed her the “nest wrecker.” But Rauch said that was a bit unfair as she is “just trying to find a mate.”
And Rauch added, “Eagles don’t have access to Tinder.”
Mr. President’s fidelity is apparently normal. Typically, bald eagles stick with the same partner, staying together for as long as 20 years.
“Maybe [The First Lady] wasn’t ready to lay and wasn’t that concerned about it,” Rauch said.
Last year, Rauch said there were four or five other female eagles that tried to get into the arboretum nest but when it was egg-laying time, The First Lady chased them off.
Another theory on why The First Lady has not yet laid an egg — or eggs — is that she has her own, unique pattern in egg-laying.
Each year, experts said they have noticed she’s about nine days later than the previous year in laying, something they attribute to her hormones. Typically, female bald eagles lay eggs sometime between January and March, and the eggs have roughly a 35-day incubation.
“Hormones play a big role, and having another female in there could have backed her up,” Rauch said.
Experts said they are a little but not overly concerned about The First Lady being late in laying eggs this year.
Last year, the eagle parents at the arboretum had two eaglets — Honor and Glory — in late March. The parents have laid — and hatched — successfully at the arboretum spot in previous years.
“I’ve been worried about them before, but they’re going to do what they’re doing to do,” Rauch said.
He said there has been “plenty of interaction” between Mr. President and the First Lady.
“They built a nest fold, and she looks like she’s going to and then she doesn’t,” Rauch said. “It’s like watching a pot that doesn’t boil.”