The U. S. Forest Service has scheduled its four bald eagle counts for this winter. All counts will be on the Saturday mornings of Dec. 12, Jan. 9, Feb. 13 and March 12.

Migrating eagles typically begin arriving in the area in late November and leave in late March or early April. During the winter, Southern California bald eagles are typically found at many of the lakes, including Big Bear Lake, Baldwin Lake, Silverwood Lake, Lake Arrowhead, Green Valley Lake, Grass Valley Lake in the San Bernardino Mountains and Prado Dam, Lake Perris, Lake Hemet, Lake Skinner, Diamond Valley Lake, Lake Matthews and the Salton Sea to the south.

The Forest Service stresses that no experience is necessary. Signing up ahead of time is not required either. Volunteers can just show up at the designated time and location, dress warmly, bring binoculars and a watch.

This is an opportunity to catch a glimpse of our national symbol.  Brief orientations prior to the count teach volunteers where to go and what to do.

Two bald eagles reside on the shores of Lake Hemet. In 2014, they produced two eaglets.

The local count will be at Lake Hemet. Volunteers meet at the Lake Hemet Grocery Store at 8:30 a.m. on the above dates for orientation. Contact Ann Bowers ([email protected] or 909-382-2935) for more information.

Other counts that day within the San Bernardino National Forest will be at Big Bear Lake, Lake Arrowhead, Lake Gregory, Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area and Lake Perris State Recreation Area.