If you’re into birding or wildlife watching, late January and February are some of the best times for viewing Bald Eagles. Not only do the leafless trees make spotting them easier, but this is also a very important time in the birds’ life cycles. In January, they begin their courtship and pairing rituals, which can include dramatic mid-air displays. During this time, they also begin nest-building. The nests will be ready by mid-February, the time when eagles usually lay their eggs.
Want to learn more about Bald Eagles? On Saturday, February 6, Barr Lake State Park will be holding their annual Bald Eagle Festival. Barr Lake, near Brighton, is considered one of the state’s best birding hot-spots and has been a Bald Eagle nesting site each winter since at least 1986. The annual festival will include educational presentations and programs as well as guided hikes (advance registration required). For more information, visit the Barr Lake State Park website.
Eagles are often found near bodies of water, because fish are one of their main sources of prey. John Martin Reservoir State Park, near Las Animas and the Arkansas River, is another great place for viewing Bald Eagles. More information is available on their website and Bald Eagle brochure.
For additional reading on Bald Eagles in our state, see Colorado Parks & Wildlife publications An Eye for Eagles and How to Search for Raptor Nests. In addition, the Colorado Birding Trail guidebooks list other great places for spotting Bald Eagles across the state. There are four guidebooks, one for each region of Colorado: northeastern, northwestern, southeastern, and southwestern.
Photos courtesy Colorado Parks & Wildlife