It was a sight I have waited thirty-eight years to see....a mature Bald Eagle in the field adjacent to my back yard. The eagle was sitting next to a puddle of water less than 100 yards from my door. Futher investigation showed that the melting snow had revealed a deer carcass. Voila! Chow time for our national symbol.
A short personal history of the fall and return of the Bald Eagle:
Late 1950's - I bought my first canoe for fishing trips down the beautiful St Croix river and into the BWCA. When the eagles disappeared from the St. Croix Valley, it happened in such a way we didn't really notice it at first. Their were still a few eagles in the BWCA and the Superior National Forest. Then I read Silent Spring.... and noticed.
The Clean Air and Water Act, the EPA, the banning of DDT and an Endangered Species list followed and began to turn the tide. Finally then we gradually saw them return to the St Croix. Increasing numbers were wintering in the Mississippi River Valley. And then they began to appear here in Fillmore County, about sixty miles from the Big River. I began to see more and more on my trouting days along the streams of Bluff County. Then maybe 15 years ago the first nesting was spotted here on a canoe trip down Bear Creek. Now birds are overwintering here as well.
Today there was a mighty eagle sitting confidently in the field behind my house. Wonderful!
My friend Angel from the
National Eagle Center in