Bald Eagle Count Rises

Last week, the Massachusetts division of fisheries and wildlife held its annual bald eagle survey. The results, they say, indicate a successful reintroduction of the eagle population.

Birder Greg Conlan grew up near the Neponset River, but it was only after the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013 that he develop a passion for photographing bald eagles here.

"I was working on Engine 7 in Boston. We were the first to respond to the finish line," he said. "I developed PTSD as a result."

So, Conlan says, he's "healing through the lens."

"It's pretty fascinating, I have driven around New England and Virginia, and I had never seen one until here, in my own back yard," he said.

"Now we are finding some of our biggest growth are most dramatic growth of eagle populations is the greater Boston area," said Massachusetts State Ornithologist Andrew Vitz.

The bald eagle survey showed 51 nesting territorial pairs last year. This year, Vitz expects the count to be in the mid to upper 50s.

"We are finding that these urban birds that we are getting here in Massachusetts, you are starting to see in other metropolitan areas," Vitz said. "These are ones that are acclimated to people, they have pretty much learned to live with human disturbance in the area."

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