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Nine bald eagles counted so far in winter census

December 19, 2011 | 11:56 am

Bald Eagle photo from eagle count  (2)

Biologists and volunteers spent the weekend scouring lakeside areas in the San Bernardino and San Jacinto mountains for the first bald eagle count of the winter.

Nine bald eagles were seen Saturday by a group of about 80 volunteers and state and federal biologists participating in the eagle census. Four of the eagles (three adults and a juvenile) were found in the Big Bear and Baldwin Lake area; two juveniles were at Lake Arrowhead and Lake Gregory; and one adult and one juvenile were found at Silverwood Lake.

The spotters could tell the difference between juveniles and adults by their color. Juveniles have a brown head and tail, while adults have the white head and tail that takes four to five years to grow in.

Eagle countings will take place in January, February and March. The number of eagles in Southern California is typically low in December, but increases at the beginning of the year as more migrate south.

Eagles like to spend their winters here because of the abundance of ducks and fish.


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Photo: An adult bald eagle at Big Bear Lake on Saturday. Credit: Robin Eliason / U.S. Forest Service