Southern California environment news and trends

Once endangered, now flourishing - time to count bald eagles

Bald eagle

AFP

The U.S. Forest Service seeks volunteers to count bald eagles on Saturday in the San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains.

The U.S. Forest Service is looking for volunteers to help count bald eagles this Saturday. It’s repeated the ritual every winter since 1978. The count attracts hundreds of volunteers to the San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains, where the birds migrate south for the winter.

Biologist Robin Eliason says the eagle count is important to ensure that humans are properly protecting the formerly endangered species.

“When we originally started doing these, the bald eagle population was really low in the U.S.," she said. "So the federal government was doing mid-winter bald eagle counts across the country to really keep track of the bald eagle recovery.”

The count will take place in Lake Hemet, Big Bear Lake, Lake Gregory and Arrowhead, Lake Perris, and Silverwood Lake. It’ll start at 9 o’clock Saturday morning and it lasts one hour.

To volunteer for the count, call the U.S. Forest Service at the location where you plan to show up.  For Lake Hemet, call (909) 382-2935; Lake Perris, (951) 940-5600; Big Bear Lake, or Lakes Arrowhead and Gregory, (909) 382-2832; and Silverwood Lake, (760) 389-2303.

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