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Contact: Lee Grim, (218) 283-6680
Three of the park’s 239 developed visitor use camping and houseboat sites, near bald eagle nest sites occupied by breeding pairs, were temporarily closed to campers and other human activities in early May. After the young leave the nest, which usually occurs by the middle of August, these temporarily closed park areas are reopened for public use. The sites affected by the temporary closures (Namakan Lake — Sexton Island (N 62) campsite; Rainy Lake — Skipper Rock Island (R45) and Sand Bay South (R25) houseboat sites) are now reopened to visitor use.
The park is obligated to follow the conservation management actions of the Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle Management Act (16 U.S.C. 668-668c, 1940 as amended). 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.
Voyageurs National Park biologists found 34 occupied bald eagle nests within the park boundary this breeding season. Adults were observed incubating at 33 nests compared to 38 in 2009, 29 in 2008, 30 in 2006, 26 in 2004 and 2005, and 20 pairs in 1999. Active incubation occurred at 13 park nests on Kabetogama, 11 on Namakan, 2 on Sandpoint, 1 on Crane and 6 on Rainy Lakes. Twenty six young fledged from 20 park nests. Four young fledged from the three nesting areas temporarily closed in May.
Superintendent Mike Ward said, “We really appreciate the cooperative actions of our visitors in this effort to ensure the continued success of a sustainable bald eagle population.”
Voyageurs National Park – Celebrating 35 years!