Save the Eagles Day
annually on January 10th
Today is for remembering eagles and working to save them from extinction. The bald eagle, the national bird of the United States, was once on the endangered species list, being on it from 1967 until 1995, when it was then reclassified as being "threatened." It was subsequently removed from that list in 2007, and is now listed in the "least concern" category. The work of scientists, and good stewards of both public and private land helped to spur the recovery of bald eagles. The banning of DDT helped with the eagles' recovery, as did the Endangered Species Act, which protected nesting, feeding, and roosting sites of the eagles. Although the Endangered Species Act no longer applies to bald eagles, they are still protected by the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Lacey Act.
There are over 60 species of eagles, most of which are found in Eurasia and Africa. The bald and golden eagles are the only two eagles usually in North America, although the Steller's sea eagle and white-tailed eagle find their way to North America from Eurasia by following the Aleutian Islands to Alaska, where they sometimes nest. There are nine species of eagles in Central and South America, and three in Australia. Eagles are large birds of prey, larger than most other raptors besides some vultures. They also are known for their acute eyesight, which helps them spot prey. The type of prey they eat depends on the group they are in. There are four groups: snake eagles mainly hunt reptiles, fish eagles largely live on a fish diet, harpy eagles are large eagles that inhabit tropical forests, and booted eagles are also called "true eagles" and have feather covered legs. Throughout history eagles have appeared in mythology and heraldry. Besides the bald eagle being associated with the United States, eagles are on the coat of arms of Germany and Egypt, as well as Albania's flag and coat of arms.
How to Observe
If you live near eagles, work to protect their habitat, but also make sure to keep a safe distance from their nests. You could donate to a wildlife sanctuary or encourage government officials to strengthen the environmental protection of waterways. You could also plant trees in your yard or in parks, so that eagles have more places to land. You can spend the day learning more about eagles, or about popular eagles in history such as Old Abe. Why not also spend the day listening to songs that reference eagles, such as Steve Miller's "Fly Like an Eagle," or to The Eagles?