Bald Eagles Everywhere

by Em
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I have seen more Bald Eagles over the last two weeks than I’ve seen throughout my entire life. I’ve not only spotted them in county, state and federal wildlife areas where I’ve gone birding recently, but in late March I even watched a Bald Eagle soar over my neighborhood. I also spotted an active nest just a couple of miles outside of our city recently.

A photo of a Bald Eagle nest in a large tree

Bald Eagles now nest in all 72 counties in Wisconsin. The holdout county was Milwaukee County, but a nest was finally discovered there in 2022.

In the 1960s Bald Eagles were in danger of becoming extinct, but special protections plus a ban on DDT instead helped them mount a dramatic turnaround. In 2021 the New York Times reported that there were an estimated 316,700 Bald Eagles in the lower 48 states in 2019 compared to 72,000 just ten years earlier.

I spotted this one flying over a state wildlife refuge this past weekend. It was my 5th Bald Eagle sighting of the week!

A photo of a Bald Eagle soaring in the sky

That wingspan is about 7 feet. This particular bird swooped into a body of water, but I wasn’t fast enough to see if it caught anything. Bald Eagles eat fish, but also birds, mammals and even carrion.

A fun fact about Bald Eagles from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, “Sometimes even the national bird has to cut loose. Bald Eagles have been known to play with plastic bottles and other objects pressed into service as toys. One observer witnessed six Bald Eagles passing sticks to each other in midair.”

The next time you see a large bird soaring overhead, check it out more closely. You might just discover that it’s a Bald Eagle!

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