For most amateur bird watchers, few birds can match the beauty and majesty of the Bald Eagle. With a wingspan of nearly eight feet, the bald eagle is one of the largest birds in North America. Its striking white head and tail make it easy to identify the full adults, but few realize that for their first four years, bald eagles have dark heads and tails. During these first four years, many novice bird watchers may not realize that the big bird they see is actually a bald eagle. Because of its size, they may think that it’s a golden eagle or perhaps even a turkey vulture if they don’t get a good look at it.
National Wildlife Foundation recommends Adams Point, NH for bald eagles
While many of the birds native to New Hampshire can be seen in the average New Hampshire backyard, some, like the bald eagle, may require traveling to other locations throughout the state, or neighboring states, where they are known to live in order to see them. The National Wildlife Foundation (NWF) published a list of one top winter location for spotting bald eagles. For New Hampshire they list Adams Point in Durham, New Hampshire. Adams Point is a small peninsula in the Great Bay estuary which includes 70 acres of protected New Hampshire Fish & Game Department Wildlife Management Area. Adams Point also includes a boat ramp and is a great put-in place for kayaks as well.
Bald eagles becoming more prevalent
Adams Point, however, is not the only place in New Hampshire where one may see bald eagles. Thanks to one of the great success stories of the species conservation efforts, bald eagles are growing in abundance and were removed from the endangered species list in 2007. They are now found in all of the lower 48 states plus Alaska. For residents of New Hampshire, here is a list of places in the Granite State where bald eagles have been spotted and reported through the UNH sponsored NH.birds listserv during the month of December alone.
Bald eagle sightings in New Hampshire
· Errol/ Umbagog – December 16th, 3 bald eagles
· Pittsburg, NH – December 15th, 1 bald eagle
· Hancock, NH – December 5th, 2 bald eagles at Powdermill Pond
· Nashua/ Hollis, NH – December 5th, 1 juvenile bald eagle on Nashua River near Merrimack River
· Nashua, NH – December 12th, 1 adult bald eagle near Bridge Street
· Lee/Durham, NH – December 26th, 6 adult bald eagles, 3 juveniles
· Dummer, NH – December 12th, 5 adult bald eagles, 4 juveniles
· Hanover, NH – December 4th, 2 adult bald eagles
· Rochester, NH – December 4th, 1 adult bald eagle near the Waste Water Treatment Plant
· Seabrook, NH – December 19th, 1 bald eagle on the coast
· Newington, NH – December 4th, 2 bald eagles
· Greenland, NH – December 19th, 4 adult bald eagles and 9 juveniles on coast
· Chatham, NH – December 30th, 3 juvenile bald eagles over Route 113
These are by no means the only places in New Hampshire to spot bald eagles, and there is no guarantee that if you go to these places that you’ll see one, but this list simply represents those bald eagles that were spotted and reported to the NH.birds email list during the month. A number of these sightings were of multiple eagles since they tend to group together during the winter months. In the spring they will separate again to individual territories for the breeding season. Bald eagles are a good winter bird watching target for New Hampshire bird watchers.
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