In the (Warsaw) Country Courier there was a wonderful picture published and photographed by the managing editor of the paper. It was a very nice representation of the American bald eagle, our national symbol.
This made me think, how many residents of Wyoming County know about the status of the American bald eagle and golden eagle? Through my website I researched the Department of the Interior’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This offered a “did you know” that U.S. Fish and Wildlife agency is in the process of developing a permit system for the take of bald and golden eagles by otherwise lawful activities. Previously, bald eagles were protected under the Endangered Species Act but now the permitting system being developed comes under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. For bald eagles, this change was necessary due to the de-listing of the species under ESA. This law provides for the protection of the bald eagle (the national symbol) and the golden eagle by prohibiting, except under certain specified conditions, the taking, possession and commerce of such birds. The 1972 amendments increased penalties for violating provisions of the Act or regulations issued pursuant thereto and strengthened other enforcement measures. Rewards are provided for information leading to arrest and conviction for violation of the Act.
It is worthy to note that the national symbol, the bald eagle, is definitely being seen in Wyoming County. The wind energy facilities, like Noble-Bliss, Wethersfield and High Sheldon, when in operation, show evidence that raptors and other avian population (bats, sharp shinned hawks, etc.) will be harmed by rotating blades. Many of these species are on the Department of Environmental Conservation and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service endangered, threatened, or species of concern list. It is of concern that the bald and golden eagles, though under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, could suffer a similar fate.
As a citizen of the United States, and having recognized the symbol of the bald eagle as our national emblem, it is time to write to the Department of the Interior’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife to keep the bald and golden eagle on the endangered list. It is important for the residents of Wyoming County to be vigilant and protect the eagles. Are we compromising the preservation of the environment due to egocentricity of government and corporate agencies? Prosperity cannot ride on the backs of green energy giants who will compromise our economic welfare and environmental quality which will someday be transferred to our children. The Fish and Wildlife Service has documented that since 1970 when only one pair existed, the population has grown in New York State to 200 pair. Perhaps there is a place in this vast country where bald eagles flourish, but Wyoming County only has a small number of them. Our fragile eagle population needs as much protection as we can provide. It is wrong to intercede on the re-population of our national symbol for any reason. Talk to your neighbors, many have not yet been fortunate to see one locally.
What will you tell your grandchildren when they are all gone … sorry I didn’t know … Well, now you know, what will you do! Please, residents of Wyoming County, you need to be more aware. This is your environmental treasure! This American treasure and national symbol is too precious to lose. We are in danger of forcing a serious exchange that will cost us not only our tax dollars, but our precious bald eagle population. The eagles, whether migratory or nesting pairs, won’t accommodate to the industrial wind turbines. They will not live here with this environmental change.
If you are concerned please visit: http://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/CurrentBirdIssues/BaldEagle/DisturbEAFinal.pdf, or http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/9381.html.
Lynn Lomanto lives in Orangeville.
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