Saturday morning, during the U.S. Forest Service’s fourth and final bald eagle count of the 2013-14 season, just one adult eagle was seen at Lake Hemet.
During this count, a grand total of nine eagles (seven adults and two juveniles) were counted at the lake areas in and near the San Bernardino National Forest. This is six fewer than during the February vigil.
Besides the Lake Hemet eagle, observers spotted five eagles (including one juvenile) at Big Bear Lake; one juvenile eagle at Lake Arrowhead; and two adult eagles at Silverwood Lake. For the second consecutive month, no eagles were seen at either Lake Gregory or Lake Perris, although two were seen at these sites in January.
About 191 observers participated in the one-hour eagle census (19 at Lake Hemet, 57 at the Big Bear area, 20 at Lake Arrowhead and Lake Gregory, 68 at Silverwood Lake and 37 at Lake Perris).
“It was a beautiful day for spotting eagles and was a great way to end our winter eagle censuses,” said Robin Eliason, district biologist for the SBNF’s Mountaintop Ranger District.
“Many of the bald eagles have started migrating out of Southern California, heading north to their breeding grounds,” she continued in a press release. “A few breeding pairs have set up nesting territories and are year-round residents.
“A pair of bald eagles is tending their nest at Lake Hemet. Big Bear Lake’s nesting pair hatched two chicks in early February but, unfortunately, they did not survive last week’s severe storm.”