Fly like an eagle: County has several spots to see bald eagles

The bald eagle, America’s national symbol, was recently removed from the Indiana category of species of special concern.

After years on the federal endangered species list, the bald eagle was removed in 2007. Indiana followed the lead by removing the national symbol from the state endangered species category in 2008 when it was placed in the special concern category.

Although the bald eagle has been removed from these lists, it is still protected under several laws, such as the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act.

The Paper of Wabash County spoke with Lynnanne Fager, interpretive naturalist for Upper Wabash Interpretive Services to find out more about the history of bald eagles.

“The two main reasons they were put on the endangered species list in 1973 was habitat loss and DDT in the waterways,” said Fager. “Once DDT and other heavy metals were banned, the nation’s water quality gradually improved to a point where it was safe to bring eagles into the state under the reintroduction program. Between 1985 and 1989, 73 bald eagle chicks were brought into Indiana from Alaska and Wisconsin, raised at Monroe Lake in the hacking towers. Once released, and the birds reach adulthood, the birds typically return to around a 100 miles radius to build nests. Our first successful nest after reintroduction occurred in 1991, nearly 100 years after documentation of the last historical nest in Indiana.  The goal was 50 nests. In 2010, with 120 eagle territories, Indiana Fish & Wildlife discontinued monitoring of nests and relied on citizens to report nests. As of 2020, there were over 350 nests reported within the state.”

Posted on 2021 Jan 12