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Bald Eagle

Photo from The Cornell Lab

The next feathered friend I want to tell you about has a storied past. Having been our national symbol since 1782, it’s quite ironic that we nearly extirpated the majestic bald eagle. Don’t worry though, the species that was once federally endangered can be found thriving at Alderbrook.

I was lucky enough to work with the Lake Monroe Wildlife Specialist, Rex Waters, in my home state of Indiana, where bald eagles went locally extinct before 1900. During my time there, we tracked down all the bald eagles' nests in the area and recorded their location using a GPS, none of which would have been there if it weren't for Mr. Waters hand raising eaglets in the 1980's.

One might ask, "How did you find the nests?", Well, it's not that hard to find a bald eagles nest. They are, after all, the largest tree nests in the world. Some can reach 4,000 pounds! Mr. Waters would say, "Look for a Volkswagen stuck up in a tree."

My favorite spot to watch bald eagles is by kayak during low tide where the Skokomish River lets out into the Hood Canal. It's a sight to be seen, as a bald eagle's hunting style consists more of harassing other birds for their caught fish than actually hunting. It's for this reason that Benjamin Franklin did not want the bald eagle as our national symbol, having said, "He is a bird of bad moral character."

Regardless of the bald eagle's character, I think it says a lot about the benevolent character of our country in overcoming the species' near extinction. Come by to appreciate the bald eagles at Union City Market and Alderbrook Resort & Spa. Photo courtesy of The Cornell Lab - allaboutbirds.org.

-MS

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