[Date Prev][Date Next][Date Index]

GLIN==> USFWS National Wildlife Refuges Play Pivotal Role In Bald Eagle Rebound

----- Forwarded by Rich Greenwood/R3/FWS/DOI on 03/21/2006 07:51 AM -----
             Sent by:                                                      
             03/20/2006 02:12          [fws-news] National Wildlife        
             PM                        Refuges Play Pivotal Role In Bald   
                                       Eagle Rebound                       
             Please respond to                                             

Contact: Martha Nudel, 703-358-1858

By the end of February, two new eaglets were in residence in a loblolly
pine tree on Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge.  Last year, the nest
produced three eaglets last year on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

Now you can watch the eaglets in the Blackwater Refuge nest by logging onto
the live Eagle Cam at http://www.friendsofblackwater.org/camcentral.html.

The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge isn’t the only place in the Refuge
System where you can find bald eagles. There are over 150 national wildlife
refuges providing valuable  habitat for the American symbol.  These areas
are a pivotal reason that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is now
considering removing the bald eagle from the Federal list of threatened and
endangered species.  The Service on February 13 reopened the public comment
period on that proposal.

The bald eagle population in the lower 48 states has recovered from an
estimated 417 nesting pairs in 1963 to the current estimated population of
7,066 breeding pairs.

“Across the country, national wildlife refuges can boast about their work
on behalf of bald eagles,” said National Wildlife Refuge Chief Bill
Hartwig.  “The successes are almost too plentiful to count.”

Hartwig pointed to Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge in New York (LAKE
ONTARIO)as just
one example.  In 1976, the New York State Department of Environmental
Conservation in cooperation with the Fish and Wildlife Service established
the world’s first hacking program, which relocates immature bald eagles and
allows them to learn to survive in the wild until they are ready to fly.
Eagles bred at Patuxent Research Refuge in Maryland were among those
released into Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge during the time when the
population was at a precarious level.

The success at Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge has been stunning.
Eagles have fledged every year but four years since 1987.  For more
information about Montezuma Refuge, go to http://www.fws.gov/r5mnwr/.

Here are a dozen more national wildlife refuges where Americans can see
bald eagles:

Klamath Basin Refuges (Tulelake, California,
http://klamathbasinrefuges.fws.gov) hosts the largest wintering
concentration of bald eagles in the lower 48 states.  Flying from as far
away as the Northwest Territories in Canada and Glacier National Park, they
quickly settle into a daily routine of waterfowl scavenging throughout the
basin’s marshes by day and seeking shelter in large trees on nearby Bear
Valley National Wildlife Refuge at night.

Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (Basom, New York, (LAKE ERIE & LAKE
http://iroquoisnwr.fws.gov)  Midway between Buffalo and Rochester, the
refuge counts eagle watching as one of its most popular activities.  From
February through August, visitors can view live television transmissions
from an active bald eagle nest.

Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge (Woodbridge, Virginia,
http://refuges.fws.gov/profiles/index.cfm?id=51610)  Eighteen miles south
of Washington, DC, on the banks of the Potomac River, the national wildlife
refuge was established in 1969 for the protection of nesting, feeding and
roosting habitat for bald eagles.  From November through March, eagles are
courting, rebuilding their nests and laying eggs.

Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge (Crystal River, Florida,
http://chassahowitzka.fws.gov/) From October through April, many bald
eagles winter and nest on the banks of the Chassahowitzka River.  Visitors
can take pontoon boat tours, rent canoes or bring their own boats to get
views of adult and juvenile birds hunting for fish.

Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge: (Zimmerman, Minnesota,
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/sherburne/) is a particularly good spot for
eagle viewing.  Hundreds of eagles are drawn to the refuge.  Although their
numbers are especially strong in the spring, some eagles are there almost
11 months each year.

Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge (Ridgefield, Washington,
http://ridgefieldrefuges.fws.gov/) is home to four nesting pair of bald
eagles, but dozens more drop by in the winter, feeding on waterfowl and
fish from nearby Columbia River.  The birds are usually easily visible from
December through March and sometimes beyond, depending on the Columbia
River salmon runs.

Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (Cambridge, Maryland,
http://blackwater.fws.gov/) The refuge annually winters more than 200 bald
eagles, and supports the Atlantic Coast’s largest nesting population of
bald eagles north of Florida.  The Nanticoke River, in the heart of the
refuge's Nanticoke Division, has been designated a Maryland Wild and Scenic

DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge (Missouri Valley, Iowa,
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/desoto/)  This refuge is an important wintering
area for up to 120 bald eagles. Indeed, wildlife surrounds visitors at the
refuge. Although wild animals can be elusive, every bend, bush, and field
provides a viewing opportunity. Visitors can explore Cottonwood/Grassland,
Missouri Meander and Wood Duck nature trails.

Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge: (Mound City, Missouri,
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/squawcreek/) Visitors can attend Bald Eagle Days
in December, featuring live eagle shows and guided tours of the refuge’s
2,300 bald eagles.  Eagle Overlook, a 1.5-mile round trip meanders into the
refuge’s two largest wetlands.  The refuge is a major stopover for
waterfowl, with more than 500,000 birds in the fall.

Reelfoot National Wildlife Refuge (Union City, Tennessee,
http://reelfoot.fws.gov/) hosts between 150 and 200 bald eagles from
December through mid-January and sometimes through February, as the birds
take advantage of the thousands of ducks and geese wintering on the
15,000-acre Reelfoot Lake.

North Platte National Wildlife Refuge: (Scottsbluff, Nebraska,
http://crescentlake.fws.gov)  Bald eagles have successfully nested on the
refuge each year since 1992. The 1992 nest was the second successful nest
in the state in more than 100 years.  Created as a sanctuary for migrating
birds, the refuge is open in December for Bald Eagle Viewing Days.
Spotting scopes are set up along the lake for visitors to view the dozen or
so bald eagles that take advantage of the masses of migrating birds.

Kenai National Wildlife Refuge: (Soldotna, Alaska, http://kenai.fws.gov)
With a statewide population of between 50,000 and 70,000 bald eagles, much
of Alaska is eagle country.  In fact, visitors are likely to see these
majestic birds anywhere in the coastal south-central or southeastern
portions of the state, including downtown Anchorage.  For a special
eagle-viewing experience, try floating through the Kenai National Wildlife
Refuge in June or early July when the mighty king salmon return to their
birth waters to spawn. Visitors will see hunting birds hovering high
overhead, and both mature and immature eagles perched in trees lining the
banks above this world-class fishery.

For a map of national wildlife refuges with eagles, visit

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency
responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and
plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American
people. The Service manages the 96-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge
System, which encompasses 545 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small
wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 69 national
fish hatcheries, 63 Fish and Wildlife Management offices and 81 ecological
services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws,
administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations,
restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife
habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their
conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Assistance program,
which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on
fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.
News releases are also available on the World Wide Web at

%vq謆-y-ߢ*'5p,a0Vz޵:,&ކi0	bw+)ڞz.ǟiS,Ơzm%y޷k?Xjyw-٥Nj!bm )zl	b{%Ƨvb*'ޱy֛(r,z殶+םqu'q,jʷ-,z,h+lځ鞞