MIAMI — Editor's note: The image above is a stock photo.
Less than a day after breaking out of its shell, a baby bald eagle chick has passed away at Zoo Miami.
Zoo Miami’s Ron Magill confirmed the news on Friday, writing the third eagle chick did not survive the night after hatching Thursday morning.
According to Magill, the hatchling came into the world with the odds stacked against it, unable to compete with the size and strength of its siblings born several days earlier.
"Survival of the fittest," he wrote on Twitter.
The pair of bald eagles, named Ron and Rita after Magill and his wife, build a nest and laid three eggs last year on an artificial platform constructed in Miami-Dade.
The first baby hatched on New Year's Day, but it's sibling wasn't far behind. Egg number two hatched on Jan. 2.
Magill told CBS Miami that successfully raising three eaglets is rare because they are often aggressive toward one another.
"Though I realize this is very sad, it is important that all of you see nature as it really is and not some glorified fantasy," Magill wrote on Facebook. "The struggle to survive is real and sometimes very difficult to watch but nature depends on survival of the fittest."
"Let's all watch, learn and appreciate the amazing natural world while hoping and praying for the best for R! and R2. "