As I have mentioned previously, my folks live outside of Branson on Table Rock Lake. The last few years they’ve had a Bald Eagle nest in a large tree quite close to their house. On many occasions at the lake, we’ve been able to sit and watch these majestic creatures circle high in the sky. Politics aside, this symbol of freedom is almost magical to observe.
The Bald Eagle has been the national emblem of the United States since the 1700s. Once endangered the Bald Eagle Restoration Program has brought these beautiful birds back to relatively high numbers. According to the North American Breeding Bird Survey, Eagles now have reached about 200,000.
Bald Eagles are generally found in timber around large bodies of water. Fish are the primary food source, but they are known to generally dine on whatever meat is available. On more than one occasion, I’ve witnessed these giant birds swoop down and snatch up dead or dying fish out of a body of water.
Eagle nests generally range between four and seven feet in diameter and three to four feet tall. Once built, it’s common to see the birds return to the same nest year after year. A typical “clutch” size is between 1-3 eggs with a nesting period anywhere between 50 and 100 days.
Until I saw it with my own eyes, I wouldn’t have believed an Eagle able to swim, but indeed they can. Using their wings like paddles, they can glide upon the top of the surface of the water until they reach their destination. With wingspans up to seven feet, their wings work quite well displacing water like the paddles of a canoe.
Finally, Bald Eagles mate for life. As an attorney who handles divorce cases, perhaps married couples could learn a thing or two from one of America’s most beautiful creatures. Until next time folks. . .