Researchers ask public to help find bald eagle nests in Ohio

Wildlife office asks people to submit sightings online.

February 2, 2020, 3:10 PM

Ohio wildlife researchers are asking residents to flock together, keep their eyes open and help find the state's growing population of bald eagles.

The state's Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife began a two-month public research project Saturday that will collect submissions of nest findings. Anyone who lives or visits the state and spies an eagle can log the sighting on the agency's website from now until March 31 and submit data for verification.

"This is a great opportunity to get outdoors and see this soaring raptor, all while providing a valuable conservation service to our state," ODNR Director Mary Mertz said in a statement.

PHOTO: Profile of a Bald Eagle.
STOCK PHOTO/Getty Images

The ODNR wildlife staff will verify each submission and post the confirmed sightings and locations on its site. Typically, their biologists would estimate the number of eagle nests by flying over locations, but a large-scale attempt to find the nests hasn't been done in eight years, when the bald eagle was taken off Ohio's endangered species lists.

The bird was close to extinction in 1979, when there were only four nesting pairs, ODNR said. Last year, there were more than 350, according to the agency.

ONDR officials said the nests are most prominent in locations such as the western Lake Erie marsh region, the Magee Marsh Wildlife Area and Mosquito Creek Wildlife Area. They can also be found near the state's major rivers, according to researchers.

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