Skip to comments.Thriving Bald Eagles May Lose Protection [Pennsylvania]
Posted on 06/18/2005 6:38:16 PM PDT by Brian328i
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - The population of bald eagles has rebounded so dramatically in Pennsylvania that the species may soon be moved off the state's endangered list and accorded the less serious status of a threatened species.
The state was down to three nesting pairs by 1980, all in Crawford County, but the nesting population currently numbers at least 92 pairs and their range extends to about one-third of Pennsylvania's 67 counties.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission will consider the change of status later this month, along with proposals to add two birds to the endangered list and move three from threatened to endangered.
Active bald eagle nests in Pennsylvania have averaged 1.4 offspring annually in recent years, and about 15 new nest sites have been discovered this year alone, said Game Commission wildlife biologist Dan Brauning, who supervises the wildlife diversity program.
Eagles are nesting in such areas as suburban Philadelphia that are outside their traditional strongholds along the Susquehanna River and in the wetlands of northwestern Pennsylvania.
"It's reflecting what has happened, the work that's gone into the species over many, many years, and I think it's a day to celebrate," Brauning said Friday.
The proposed changes would be the first revisions to Pennsylvania's endangered and threatened species lists in six years. Besides the decision on the bald eagle, there are also proposals to add blackpoll warblers and black-crowned night herons to the endangered list and reclassify as endangered dickcissels, sedge wrens and yellow-bellied flycatchers.
Birds proposed for the lists generally have low numbers and diminishing habitats.
Coalbed Swamp, a remote gameland near Noxen in Wyoming County, is home to many of the remaining blackpoll warblers and yellow-bellied flycatchers. There have only been two or three sedge wren sightings each year since 1996, and dickcissel nests are regularly found only in Cumberland and Adams counties.
There are currently 14 bird and mammal species on Pennsylvania's endangered list, which is similar to the federal list but covers only animals native to Pennsylvania. Eight species are on the state's threatened list and one native animal, the passenger pigeon, is listed as extinct.
"We're tweaking things a little finely here. For instance, the Carolina parakeet, on some people's lists, did occur in Pennsylvania, and it's extinct. But (there)'s not hard evidence that they nested here," Brauning said.
Animals on the lists are protected by state-funded conservation programs. There are additional criminal fines for killing them and their presence in an area can complicate or stop development and construction.
Are eagles to lose their nothing down floating rate mortages?
I know firsthand that in northern Wisconsin, along the Lake Superior shore, seeing several bald eagles everyday is commonplace.
They're pretty impressive birds.
We are in Northeast PA and see bald eagles near our home. At the moment there is a pair of osprey nesting in a cell tower next to I-84 about 1/2 mile from our house.
Not particularly good eating. I understand that the taste is like a cross between spotted owl and California Condor.
This is a good thing, but enviro-wackos will have a fit.
I prefer seafood.
Give me a nice dolphin sandwich with some sea turtle soup.
Followed up of course with a slice of blue whale pie.
My husband builds those towers and cringes when they see Osprey - you can't do ANYTHING if Osprey are present -
By "suburban Philadelphia" they don't mean the middle of a housing development (which I can't imagine being a desirable habitat for an eagle), but the counties surrounding Philadelphia. The one nesting pair I know has its nest on the bank of the Pickering Reservoir, near Valley Forge Park. It's not exactly rural, but it's not on top of people, either.
I know where the bald eagle nest is in suburban Phila. It is not near any home and is on a lake owned by Montgomery County. Bald Eagles are intolerant of humans and their activity, and don't nest close to houses.
All the local folks are very protective of the eagle nest and this includes the park personnel. Many people come to view the nest at long range. This has brought revenue into the area, and many are very pleased at the unexpected consequences.
They actually have two nests, one here and one at Three Mile Island (really). They play the winds and the hills during the day.
I watch them for hours. When you least expect them they are like a submarine, "dive, dive". They normally pick up their prey and carry them away and, get this, drop them. Then they pick them up again to go to a nest.
Nature amazes me. I know so little.
How could you not? That's gotta be as distracting as living next door to a nude beach.
Thanks for picking up Maggie's list.
In rural Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, eagles are now nesting near drainage ditches where experts claimed they needed vast expanses of open water.
The huge birds can be frequently seen scavenging deer carcasses. Quite startling if you're not expecting to see them.
They are neither endangered nor threatened, but gubmint agencies don't let facts get in their way. Folk wisdom has it that DDT kept their population down long after it ceased to be acceptable to shoot them on sight.
Maybe "Fast Eddie" can find a way to tax them, afterall he taxes everthing else.
I go up trout fishing at least once a year in NE Iowa on the Turkey river which is at it's widest maybe 150 feet. They are very common up there.
You see them far away from the river, getting snakes, mice, etc. I've nearly hit more than one coming out of a ditch with prey. Like most species, they're far more resilient than given credit for.
I will assume you are a creationist seeing as how you are confusing science for folk wisdom. The connection between DDT and a diminishing of bird populations has got an incredibly strong scientific base and such overwhelming cirucmstantial evidence that even a California jury would have to agree. Below is from a Duke University website:
"DDT can change into many different forms that are only slightly different from the original. We call these new forms metabolites. We think that one of these metabolites, abbreviated DDE, interferes with certain reproductive enzymes in birds.
Enzymes act as helpers for certain chemical reaction. They can speed up biological processes, slow them down, etc.. In birds, certain reproductive enzymes affect how much calcium is deposited in eggshells. DDE probably gets in the way of some of these enzymes. Consequently, eggshells have less calcium, which makes them easier to break."
I phrased it that way because I never saw the science, just heard the DDT link repeated.
Thanks for scientific confirmation.