Bald Eagle Recovery in Kentucky
Bald Eagles, found only in North American, give us hope that we can, in fact, save our threatened wildlife. They were put on the Endangered Species List in 1978. In 1782 when this bird became our national symbol, and estimated 100,000 nesting eagles lived in this country. By 1963, with only 487 nesting pairs of bald eagles remaining, the species was in danger of extinction. Loss of habitat, shooting, and DDT poisoning contributed to the near demise of our national symbol. Following enactment of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, the Service listed the species in 1978 as endangered throughout the lower 48 states, except in Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin where it was designated as threatened.
What we did to bring the Bald Eagle back:
•We banned DDT
•We prohibited killing of eagles
•We improved water quality in many of our lakes and rivers
•We protected nest sites
•We restored eagles back to areas where they had been eliminated. Thus, on June 28, 2007, the Service announced the recovery of our nation’s symbol and removal from the list of threatened and endangered species.
Kate Slankhard, avian biologist with The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife, takes a count of eagles nesting in Kentucky each year. In 2016, she announced great news. After a slow year for population growth in 2015, bald eagle expansion was back on track in 2016, with 151 nests documented. Twenty new territories (where eagles have not been documented in any previous years) were established or located in 2016. This was more than any years past. The total number of nesting territories documented in Kentucky in 2016 increased 14% from 2015.
Year Eagle Nesting Territories
Aldo Leopold: Green Fire
Aldo Leopold was a prominent 20th century biologist, conservationist and author of A Sand County Almanac, published in 1948. Scholars cite its 59 essays as the" Bible of the Environmental movement of the 1960's", quoted in the legislative history of the landmark Endangered Species, Clear Air and Clean Water federal statutes. Leopold popularized the term "ecology" in hundreds of speeches and articles based on environmental adventures in all parts of this country and abroad. He founded the U.S Wilderness Society, and was the country's first college professor in the field of wildlife management.
Green Fire explores Leopold's personal journey of observation and understanding, It reveals how his ideas resonate with people across the entire American landscape, from inner cities to the most remote wild lands. Central to the film is the image of the “fierce green fire” that Leopold saw in the eyes of a dying wolf. In his famous essay, “Thinking Like a Mountain,” Leopold reveals a transformation in his own basic values. His journey to a new way of looking at the world provides the narrative arc of the film as Curt Meine sets out to explore both the man and his contemporary legacy.
Join us on Tuesday, September 20, 2016, at 7:00 p.m. at Beargrass Christian Church, 4100 Shelbyville Road, when the Louisville Audubon Society will host an award- winning documentary, "Green Fire", which chronicles Leopold's life, message, and lasting impact.
Dick Dennis is a Certified Land Ethics Leader with the Leopold Foundation, and will introduce you to his hero Aldo Leopold.