Home | Classifieds | Place Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Kudos | Obits | Real Estate | Subscriber Services | Villager | Health Directory | Contact Us
The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : opinions : opinions May 26, 2016

11/1/2012 1:07:00 PM
Editorial: Arizona desert bald eagles still need endangered species protection

When it comes to preservation of Arizona’s desert eagles, it only makes sense to take the better-safe-than-sorry route.

That’s why our hat goes off to the Center for Biological Diversity and the Maricopa Audubon Society for their relentless legal battles against the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to give these birds endangered species protection.

On Oct. 30, the two organizations filed their third lawsuit charging that USFWS has based its conclusion on politics instead of science.

True, 2011 was a banner year for desert bald eagle reproduction. According to the Arizona Game and Fish Department, the Arizona eagles set three records -- most eggs, most nesting sites and most nestlings fledged. Of the 79 eggs laid, at 55 breeding sites, 56 survived and fledged.

One year earlier, though, heavy winter rains made it only an average year. With a wet winter, the Verde River and Oak Creek get really muddy and the adult eagles are unable to find fish. When they can’t support themselves, they end up abandoning their nest so they can go out foraging. The breeding pairs that year at the Tower nesting site upstream from Clarkdale and the Ladders breeding site 10 miles south of Camp Verde made no contribution to the state’s struggling eagle population.

The previous year, the Towers and Ladders breeding sites failed to produce any eggs. The eggs laid at the Tower site failed during incubation. Both eggs laid at the Ladders site hatched, but neither bird lived.

The Center for Biological Diversity interprets the population statistics as a sign of the worsening situation of the birds. It also bears emphasis that the Arizona Game and Fish Dept. has teamed with Liberty Wildlife, a wildlife rescue and rehab organization out of Scottsdale, to build and place artificial nests to enhance survival rates for eagle fledglings.

Perhaps U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is right and if we leave well enough alone, desert bald eagles will survive and thrive on their on.

But do we want to chance it based on the evidence? The Center for Biological Diversity and the Maricopa Audubon Society most definitely need to keep up the good fight.

Related Stories:
• Verde eagles headed to court for the third time

    Most Viewed     Recently Commented
•   Police soon will have one more reason to pull you over (4750 views)

•   What's hot in Verde Valley job market? (2956 views)

•   Cornville man charged with child molestation seeks plea (2875 views)

•   Marana man suffers skull injury, brain bleed following ATV crash (2737 views)

•   Motorcycle rider suffers head injuries in crash (2195 views)

Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to Facebook character limits. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit excessive comment entries.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Advanced Search

HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Cottonwood, AZ
Click for weather forecast

Submission Links
 •  Submit your feedback about our site

Find It Features Blogs Celebrate Submit Extras Other Publications Local Listings
Classifieds | Place Ad | Galleries | Kudos | Real Estate | Subscriber Services | e-News | RSS | Site Map | Find Verde Jobs | Contact Us
© Copyright 2016 Western News&Info, Inc.® The Verde Independent is the information source for Cottonwood and Verde Valley area communities in Northern Arizona. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Western News&Info, Inc.® Verde News Online is a service of WNI. By using the Site, verdenews.com ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the Site's terms of use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the Site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Verde News Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved