An orphaned red-tailed hawk that was adopted by bald eagles has defied expectations and survived, and now it’s acting like an eagle.
Nicknamed “Spunky,” the young hawk was spotted living in an eagle’s nest in June. Experts initially thought his chances for survival were low.
Hawks and eagles are normally mortal enemies. Hawks feed on small rodents, rabbits, and snakes, but Spunky was seen eating a flounder that he stole from one of the other eagles.
He has shown some signs of his hawk ancestry including swooping down and picking up forest debris, which young hawks do while learning to catch prey.
Spunky’s time with his adopted family may be short. Soon the eagles will migrate north, but hawks typically don’t leave the region.