Eagles Flock to the Fox River - WBAY

Eagles Flock to the Fox River

Updated:
Fox River -

It's not uncommon to see a bald eagle in northeast Wisconsin, especially this time of year. In fact, sightings of the former endangered species have become quite an attraction.

Paula Arbaugh used to see bald eagles all the time along the Mississippi River near Lacrosse. Now a northeast Wisconsin resident, when she heard they were flying over the river in Winneconne, she had to come check them out for herself.

"It's really neat," says Arbaugh. "It's really neat that they're coming to our area and we get the opportunity to see the beautiful nature and take pictures if we want to."

According to DNR Wildlife Biologist, Bryan Woodbury, eagles, which had been on the endangered species list, have made quite a comeback in Wisconsin and nationwide. He says at last count there were more than 1300 nesting sites across the state.

"That's pretty good considering we didn't have eagles since the early 80's," says Woodbury. "And so we're seeing a big population increase in such a short amount of time so it's nice to see."

And seeing eagles is what people who are visiting the shores of the Fox and Wolf Rivers from Lake Winnebago to the Bay of Green Bay are now able to do.

"I watch them at my house in the winter," says Hannah Wizner from Berlin. "They come around, not as much we're a little off the Fox River so we see them flying that's about it but I didn't know there was going to be so many here today."

Woodbury says the eagles flock to the area looking for food. According to Woodbury, "The only open water now is along the Fox River and so they concentrate on those feeding sources. They're generally a fish eater so they concentrate on the open water and that's why we see big concentrations along the Fox River this time of year."

And with very little relief in the forecast expected, the eagles, according to Woodbury could be hanging around for several more weeks.

He says, "If it starts to get milder temperatures they may start to dispersing out and start building nests and start their breeding activities, so we probably have a least another month or so of these high concentrations of eagles."

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