SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources has announced that Bald Eagle Day, a wildlife viewing event, will be Saturday, Feb. 8.
To draw plenty of eagles for people to view, DWR biologists usually bring dead carp from Utah Lake and deposit the fish at the Farmington Bay and Salt Creek waterfowl management areas. Dead carp are a favorite food of bald eagles.
However, after several eagles within the greater Great Salt Lake area died after contracting West Nile virus earlier this winter, biologists don’t want to encourage the birds to congregate.
Bob Walters, watchable wildlife coordinator for the DWR, says congregating eagles in one spot could lead to a bird that has West Nile virus passing the disease to other eagles.
But eagles should still be available to watch. The event is free and bald eagles can be viewed at five locations.
Northern Utah's viewing spots are Salt Creek Waterfowl Management Area (Compton’s Knoll), about 10 miles northwest of Corinne, where viewing will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area, 1325 W. Glover Lane (925 South), from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Central Utah's viewing spot is Fountain Green State Fish Hatchery, of Nephi, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Northeastern Utah eagle viewers can visit Split Mountain/Green River, located north of Jensen and below the Dinosaur Quarry in Dinosaur National Monument, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
In southern Utah, bird watchers can go to Kannarville, just south of Cedar City, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. just off Historic U.S. 91, a half-mile north of Kannarville.
Walters said spotting scopes will be available at each viewing site for viewers to get a good look at the eagles. Viewers can also pick up a Bald Eagle Day button. Handouts and information about bald eagles, wildlife watching and birding opportunities in Utah will be available.
For directions or more information about Bald Eagle Day, call Walters at 801-209-5326, or Division of Wildlife Resources offices in Ogden, Springville, Vernal or Cedar City.