Bald eagle nesting areas protected in Voyageurs National Park
May 31, 2020 07:31AM
Photo: International Falls Journal
By Laurel Beager of the International Falls Journal. - May 29, 2020
Voyageurs National Park is temporarily closing the breeding areas around two of the park’s bald eagle nests to campers and other human activities. After the young eagles leave in late July, these temporarily closed park areas will be reopened for public use.
The park follows the recommended conservation management actions of the Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle Management Act, a federal law enacted to protect America’s national bird from disturbance and harassment.
Each year since 1992, the park has temporarily closed the land and water areas around active bald eagle nests to visitor use during their critical nesting periods. Some eagle pairs nest in late March and early April and others may not initiate nesting until late April or early May.
The closed areas are marked with closure signs and buoys. Park officials are asking both motorized and non-motorized watercraft users to not travel within 200 meters of nests where bald eagles are actively nesting during the closure period - early May through mid-August. Boaters are also encouraged to not stop on the water within the 200 meters near active nesting sites.
Two of the park’s 291 developed day use, tent, and houseboat sites are affected by the temporary closures.
If more breeding areas are found with actively nesting pairs that fall within conservation management guidelines after this news release is issued, more park areas may be posted closed.
Park research shows people play a very important role in protecting nesting eagles and other birds. Individual eagles differ in temperament and tolerance to human and natural activities. Some are easily displaced by human/eagle interactions, whereas others are more accustomed to close interactions with humans. April, May and June are particularly sensitive periods for nesting eagles.
The closed developed areas are on Kabetogama Lake:
- Happy Landing Campsite (K-11)
- Camelback Island Campite (K-3)