Event helps share Wisconsin bald eagles’ amazing comeback story
PRAIRIE DU SAC, Wis. — The Wisconsin DNR invites the public to participate in the 36th Annual Bald Eagle Watching Days on Jan. 15-16 to celebrate the species and its remarkable comeback in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin’s longest-running eagle-watching event features in-person and virtual activities. Participants can catch a glimpse of eagles over the Wisconsin River at the newly expanded overlook on Water Street in Prairie du Sac. Volunteers will be available at the overlook to answer questions about bald eagles, weather permitting.
Attendees can also enjoy a self-guided tour on their mobile device of prime eagle viewing areas along the upper and lower portions of the Lower Wisconsin River. Both tours start at the Sauk-Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce in Sauk City. Visit the Ferry Bluff Eagle Council website for instructions.
The public can also attend presentations at the River Arts Center or watch live from the comfort of their home on the Ferry Bluff Eagle Council’s YouTube channel.
“The comeback of bald eagles in Wisconsin is an amazing story, and we’re excited to share this story with people in a special hybrid event,” said Jeb Barzen, President of the Ferry Bluff Eagle Council. “In our area, people living along the Lower Wisconsin River have worked hard to provide an environment where eagles and human neighbors thrive.”
“After 36 years of participating in the Bald Eagle Watching Days, we’re as excited as ever to promote bald eagle conservation and assist the public with viewing opportunities during winter in the Sauk Prairie area,” said Sumner Matteson, DNR Avian Ecologist. “In addition to the in-person events, the virtual options allow people to watch the programming throughout the year, instead of just in one weekend.”
Bald eagles tend to congregate near open water areas on the Wisconsin River, including below the Prairie du Sac dam where they can fish, offering a scenic destination to view the species in the wild. In general, eagle watching is best during the morning hours when the birds are most active fishing and are frequently seen perching in trees along the rivers.
When viewing eagles, please keep your distance as not to cause them to fly off. Remain in your vehicle when near them. Do not walk along the river, particularly at the hydropower dam since it is the eagles’ most active feeding area. Eagles, especially immature ones, need to conserve their energy to survive Wisconsin winters.
The 2022 Bald Eagle Watching Days event is co-sponsored by the DNR, Ferry Bluff Eagle Council, Sauk Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce and Tripp Heritage Museum in Prairie du Sac.
For more information and to download the event schedule, visit the Ferry Bluff Eagle Council website.