I’m amazed at the number of bald eagles I’ve seen this winter.
This may not be a big deal to a lot of people, but I’m of the generation when we learned about bald eagles being endangered and efforts being taken to see to their recovery, while sitting at my desk in school.
It was a huge deal. I guess that’s why to this day, when I see one, whether in flight, in a tree or sitting in a field, I feel a twinge of excitement.
We came home from a trip to purchase lumber one day, to find a bald eagle perched in a tree in our backyard. I seriously was running around like some kind of lunatic taking pictures from every angle possible. Why? Because it was so exciting ... I mean, there was a bald eagle in my backyard!
Where are those pictures now? I deleted them from my phone so I could free up space for other important pictures I will need to take.
One day this fall, we had our grandson in the backseat of the car as we were driving home. Once on the gravel, we saw an eagle sitting in the field not far from the road.
We stopped the car and let the kiddo unbuckle and stick his head out the window of the car to get the absolute best view of this beautiful bird of prey. He acknowledged it but I think he was more excited about having his head out the window.
Once it took flight and we pulled in our drive, we saw it flying over the fields. We told him that was the huge eagle we had just seen in the field, but he wasn’t having it. He informed us it couldn’t be the same bird and that was that. I’m not sure if you’ve been around a strong-minded 5-year-old, but they are never wrong ... never ... ever.
So anyway ...
My grandson spent time with me Christmas Eve since his dad wanted to do some last minute ‘Santa’ shopping. I needed a few things from the store myself, so the little guy and I headed to Pella to get some munchies for our holiday get-togethers.
On our way home, we saw several bald eagles in flight.
Again, I tried to share my excitement with my grandson. After all, this could be one of those stories he’ll tell his own grandchildren one day ... about how Nana Dana told him about the bald eagle.
I explained how large an eagle’s nest was and how they just add sticks and twigs to make it bigger and bigger every year.
I gave examples of how big the wing span of the bird could be and how they can fly higher than any other bird.
I told him about the time Papa King saw a bald eagle pick up a rabbit in our back yard and fly away with it and that the eagle was as tall as Papa’s knee.
I told him about its journey from the fear of extinction to efforts taken to assure its survival as our country’s symbol.
I told him how awesome it is to get to see this strong, majestic, faithful bird ... how the bald eagle is so important to the United State of America it is our national emblem.
His only comment?
“Then why isn’t it red, white and blue?”
There’s no winning.
Contact Dana King at firstname.lastname@example.org