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Now's The Time To Go See Eagles and Seals

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean there aren’t lots of animals to watch. Here’s a list of places to watch bald eagles all around the country are having their eagle watch or eagle festivals. Eagles can either migrate or stay put. This time of year the birds that live up north come down for open waters to fish in. They especially like waters near power plants and dams. (I guess they don’t have to migrate as far down south if they can find some artificially heated water.

Although I grew up in a time when any eagle sighting would have been spectacular, eagles are now getting much easier to see on just about any big river. The Eagle Fest last weekend offered heated tents and experts, but since Croton Point Park near the Metro-North train station is one of the best spots, you could go anytime in probably from probably January to March This last week was an eagle watching festival at Croton-on-Hudson, which is just an hour north of New York City. Bruce Yolton took spectacular pictures of eagles riding the ice flows. Another great local raptor photographer, Francois Portman, told me he went up recently but only saw birds flying in the air. So, as always it’s hit and miss.

Last weekend I tried to go see the seals that come to Sandy Hook in the winter, but just missed them. A ranger told me they had been right on the sand at Beach B, but I found none. When I walked out a mini-pier near Fort Hancock I asked two photographers if they’d seen anything. “Just a seal,” one said. Just? But I didn’t see any. The ranger also said that they’re often seen just on the island or ice off shore.

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