‚Äč  Wintering in SoCal  

 

 

Saturday January 10, 2015, the second Bald Eagle count of Winter 2015 was conducted by local Federal and State biologists, independent biologists and volunteer citizens from around several lakes in the Southern California.  A number of Bald Eagles migrate to Southern California to spend their winter vacations around Southern California’s lakes.  The birds migrate here because their prey animals (fish and ducks) are no longer available to them in the cold northern regions as ice covers the lakes and rivers.

At total of 13 Bald Eagles were observed at six different lakes in Southern California’s Inland Empire and mountains:  Lake Perris - 1 adult eagle; Lake Silverwood - 2 adult and 2 juvenile bald eagles; Lake Gregory - 1 adult; Lake Arrowhead - 2 adult eagles; Lake Hemet - 2 adult eagles; and Big Bear Lake - 2 adult and 1 juvenile bald eagles.  Juvenile bald eagles are the same size as the adults but are more similar to golden eagles in their appearance.  They do not acquire the white head and tail until about 4-5 years of age.

Over 100 volunteers and agency staff participated in the Bald Eagle search, of which most of the observers were lucky enough to see at least one Bald Eagle. 

The count coordinators, from the Forest Service and State Recreation Areas would like to thank those volunteers for their dedication in getting up early and participating in the eagle census.  The success of the Eagle counts is entirely dependent on the volunteers! 

   Future BALD EAGLE Counts > February 14th & March 14th 

 Please join us on this fun family-friendly experience – it is a special opportunity to see our beautiful and amazing national bird!  The remaining bald eagle counts for this winter are scheduled for the following Saturday mornings:  February 14th and March 14th.  There will be a free-to-the-public slideshow about Bald Eagles at 11:00 A.M. after each count and also January 17th

No experience needed.  Signing up ahead of time is unnecessary – just show up at the designated time and location, dress warmly, bring binoculars and a watch. 

NOTICE: Each location has a phone number to call the morning of the scheduled count to check for cancellation due to winter weather conditions

Big Bear Lake area volunteers will meet at 8:00 A.M.  at the Forest Service’s Big Bear Discovery Center on North Shore Drive for orientation. Contact Rari Marks (rariemarks@fs.fed.us or 909-382-2600 x4022) for more information. 

Lake Arrowhead/Lake Gregory volunteers will meet at 8:00 A.M. at the Skyforest Ranger Station for orientation. Contact Rari Marks (rariemarks@fs.fed.us or 909-382-2600 x4022) for more information. 

Please call 909-382-2832 for cancellation due to winter weather conditions – an outgoing message will be left by 6:30 A.M. on the morning of the count if it has to be cancelled. 

Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area volunteers should plan to meet at the Visitor Center at 8:00 A.M. for orientation.  Contact Kathy Williams or Mark Wright for more information about volunteering or taking an eagle tour (760-389-2303 between 8:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M.; or email: khwilliams@parks.ca.gov). 

Lake Hemet volunteers should plan on meeting at the Lake Hemet Grocery Store at 8:30 A.M. for orientation.  Contact Heidi Hoggan (hhoggan@fs.fed.us or 909-382-2945) for more information. 

Lake Perris State Recreation Area volunteers should plan to meet at the Lake Perris Regional Indian Museum at 8:00 A.M. for orientation.  Contact the office for more information at 951-940-5600. 

Contact the Discovery Center (909-382-2790) for information about Bald Eagle Celebrations.  Please call 909-382-2832 for cancellation due to winter weather conditions – an outgoing message will be left by 6:30 A.M. on the morning of the count, if it has to be cancelled. 

See websites for additional information about the San Bernardino National Forest (http://www.fs.fed.us/r5/sanbernardino/) and the California State Recreation Areas (www.parks.ca.gov)