Breeze-Courier | Taylorville, IL
weather sponsored by
Breeze-Courier




Advanced Search
search sponsored by


LOGIN | SUBSCRIBE




KMRM

home : news : national news free February 5, 2016

   
1/12/2013 2:36:00 PM
Bird watchers look to Iowa skies for bald eagles

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Bird watching enthusiasts around Iowa are looking to the skies this weekend for sightings of thousands of bald eagles known to travel through the state each winter.

Wildlife workers and volunteers will count and report bird sightings around the country Saturday and Sunday as part of the Midwinter Bald Eagle Survey. It's an event coordinated annually by the Army Corps of Engineers.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources said there were more than 3,000 eagle sightings in the state last year. Counting the birds is an annual activity embraced by several communities up and down the Mississippi River.

Stephanie Shepherd, an agency wildlife diversity biologist, said in a statement that the eagles are being spotted in other places besides stronghold spots along the Mississippi River. The key for the birds is open water, and they can find it along other waterways, such as the Des Moines River, which had high counts in 2010 and 2011.

"We are coming up with some interesting patterns here in Iowa," she said. "Iowa is a terrific place for winter eagle watching. We generally have the best concentrations along our bigger waterways, in areas where water is open."

Bald Eagle Days in Iowa are scheduled throughout January and February in places like Keokuk in the southeast part of the state, and Saylorville near Des Moines. The viewing parties, which are both indoor and outdoor, include hiking and education programs.

They include the 25th anniversary of bald eagle watching at the Grand River Center at the Port of Dubuque. Thousands are expected to attend the event, which includes live eagle and bird of prey programs and trolley rides to an outdoor viewing area.

"People look forward to coming to it," said Becca Krapfl at the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism. "It's very beautiful to see when you have so many out there."

Brian Blakeway, with the Mississippi River Project of the Rock Island District, said the events throughout Iowa draw thousands of people.

"It's a phenomenon that takes place every year," he said. "A lot of times, bald eagles are private. Anytime you can see this bird, our national symbol ... it draws attention. There's a story with the eagle. They're fighters."

The bald eagle was near extinction in the 1960s due to habitat destruction, illegal shooting and food source contamination, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The population has rebounded, and they were removed in 1997 from the list of threatened and endangered species.

The Midwinter Bald Eagle Survey, which has been held for more than 30 years, gives surveyors most of early January to finish non-overlapping routes. But the target dates are this weekend.

"The bald eagle is really a fascinating bird," Shepherd said. "It gives us, a kind of hope, with its population recovery. It is a success story. It shows up now in places we never expected eagles to be. They are also a lot of fun to watch and listen to, with their social behavior in the winter.".


Anderson Jewelers




Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

If you are looking for the SPEAK OUT submission form, you can find it by clicking here: Speak Out Form


Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

NOTE: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address will not be displayed or shared.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   












Trinity Dodge Fixed

Larry's Service Center
NewsWebPagesOpinionPeopleObituariesAg & BusinessSportsContact Us
Subscriptions | Username & Password Reminder | Change Password | Life

Breeze-Courier & Printing | 212 S Main St. Taylorville, IL 62568 | (217) 824-2233 |
website@breezecourier.com

© Copyright 2014 Breeze-Courier & Printing. All Rights Reserved.
Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Breeze-Courier & Printing.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved