The return of nesting Bald Eagles to Pittsburgh's Three Rivers has been a true watershed event for bird conservation and environmental remediation. Due to habitat loss, pollution, persecution, and pesticides, the species probably has not nested in the Pittsburgh area for 200 years or more.
2011 marked the first year that a pair successfully nested and raised young at a nest located on private property along the Ohio River. In 2013, a pair began nesting in full view of the public, along the Monongahela River near the Glenwood Bridge in a community called Hays, and they succeeded in raising a single fledgling. The nest structure did not hold up after one season's use, and the pair began to build a new nest in the late fall, in the much sturdier crotch of a larger tree about 200 feet from their previous nest.
In December 2013, the Pennsylvania Game Commission and Bill Powers from PixController, Inc. partnered to erect a nest cam at the new Hays Bald Eagle nest site. It was installed on December 20, 2013, giving eagle aficionados their first close-up views of the nest building, pre-courtship, egg-laying, and other breeding behaviors of the Hays eagle pair.