Terrible Life Choices Lead Bald Eagle Family to Seagoville Power Line. Can They Be Saved?

Categories: The Environment

EagleLandingonTransmissionWire.jpg
Dallas Trinity Trails
A male bald eagle landing on a high-voltage Oncor line in Seagoville in 2013.
Seagoville, Texas, the spot where 635 dead-ends into despair, has long been a destination for lives that have taken a seriously wrong turn. Typically, these folks wind up at FCI Seagoville, the town's federal prison and third-largest employer. More rarely, as in the case of a family of bald eagles, their trail of bad decisions leads them to the top a high-voltage power line.

God intended bald eagles to soar majestically over the Grand Canyon and whatever's left of our amber waves of grain, diving occasionally to sink a pair freedom-loving talons into a terrorist's swarthy flesh or to alight gently on Bill O'Reilly's shoulder. Their natural habitat may indeed extend into North Texas, where it might be appropriate for them to do flyovers at a Rangers game (current season excluded) or a Tea Party rally. But no just deity would intend such a resplendent creature to wind up in Seagoville.

One wonders what caused these particular birds to spiral to this nadir. Was it meth? That would explain a lot, including their apparent obliviousness to the danger posed by high-voltage power lines, but it's a bit too neat. These birds are returning to their aerie year after year, as DFW Urban Wildlife has chronicled, generation after generation. They are trapped in an inescapable cycle of misery and ignorance, the chicks never knowing that they were born to be symbols of freedom and opportunity.

Perhaps this weekend's attempt by Oncor and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to move the nest will prompt the birds to turn over a new leaf and establish a new, more promising life. At the very least, hopefully it will mean that their terrible decisions will no longer endanger the power supply of tens of thousands of responsible human beings.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.


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40 comments
ColonelAngus
ColonelAngus

"But no just deity would intend such a resplendent creature to wind up in Seagoville."


When they return, they will find that their nest is already gone.  Perhaps, much like the red-tailed hawk, they can forge out an existence in the city.

ColonelAngus
ColonelAngus

"including their apparent obliviousness to the danger posed by high-voltage power lines"


Maybe they just like living life in the fast lane.


TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

Park 'em near some windmills.

pak152
pak152

regularly saw eagles, ospreys and buzzards taking advantage of these towers in Virginia. 

so now we are forcing the relocation of the Eagles? why?

"their trail of bad decisions" oh? you can read their minds? maybe it was the right decision since it is the tallest structure in the area. perfect in their minds i bet


RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

"These birds are returning to their aerie year after year, as DFW Urban Wildlife has chronicled, generation after generation."

So we're not really saving anything here, we're just fucking around and forcing them to live where WE think they ought to live, instead of where they choose to live, year after year, generation after generation.  And then to top it off, we get the story written by a pompous ass with little reason to feel superior over Seagoville, or anyplace really.  As someone below so succinctly put it, they could have ended up in Balch Springs!! (I've lived in both).  As long as they don't end up in Dallas proper, the birds should do just fine.

wood.seanm
wood.seanm

It could be worse. They could have ended up in Balch Springs.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

We wouldn't even be worried about these glorified buzzards if Benjamin Franklin had his way and we'd made the wild turkey our national symbol.

. . . mmmmmmmmm, tuuuurkey . . .

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

 “For my own part I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen the Representative of our Country. He is a Bird of bad moral Character. He does not get his Living honestly. You may have seen him perched on some dead Tree near the River, where, too lazy to fish for himself, he watches the Labour of the Fishing Hawk; and when that diligent Bird has at length taken a Fish, and is bearing it to his Nest for the Support of his Mate and young Ones, the Bald Eagle pursues him and takes it from him.


With all this injustice, he is never in good case but like those among men who live by sharping & robbing he is generally poor and often very lousy. Besides he is a rank coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the district. He is therefore by no means a proper emblem for the brave and honest Cincinnati of America who have driven all the King birds from our country…

I am on this account not displeased that the Figure is not known as a Bald Eagle, but looks more like a Turkey. For the Truth the Turkey is in Comparison a much more respectable Bird, and withal a true original Native of America… He is besides, though a little vain & silly, a Bird of Courage, and would not hesitate to attack a Grenadier of the British Guards who should presume to invade his Farm Yard with a red Coat on.”


-- Benjamin Franklin

Montemalone
Montemalone topcommenter

They escaped from Colbert and a life hawking nuts on teevee.

Lorlee
Lorlee

I believe this is out close to the Bunker Sands Wetlands -- a must see.  A special tower w/o electricity has been built and there has been a lot of cooperation between the electric company and all other parties.  My hats off to all.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

Oh, don't worry, we would be hearing about how it's our sins against the environment keeping out bald eagles if they weren't there.


The DO would find some way to shit on Texas.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

Instead of celebrating something that would have been thought as unthinkable and impossible not that long ago, we get this snark.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Not CAN they be saved; they MUST be saved.  As to why they chose Seagoville?  How the hell do I know?

pak152
pak152

@TheRuddSki ah yes pureed eagle. but shhhhh keep it quiet the windfarms don't want to know about their giant cuisinarts

Lorlee
Lorlee

@pak152 Because their nest is on the electric towers -- just trying to make them safer and the line safer.  Good grief.  A new tall structure has been constructed minus electric lines just for them.  They were waiting to move the nest until the young birds were out of it.  It is a simple and nice story and all most of you want to do is make a muck of it or score points.


ColonelAngus
ColonelAngus

@RTGolden1  "As long as they don't end up in Dallas proper, the birds should do just fine."


It's survival in the city.  Get over it.

Sharon_Moreanus
Sharon_Moreanus topcommenter

You can build new towers but can't force Bald Eagles.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@pak152

Is it legal to collect and stuff protected species once they've become skykill?

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@Lorlee @pak152 They, the eagles, chose the place..And they've been there for years, always coming back, generation after generation.  You'd think if it was a 'bad' place for them to be, they'd choose another, or 'survival of the fittest' would do the choosing for them.

pak152
pak152

@Lorlee and what dominion virginia did instead of constructing a new tower was to build the platform higher on the structure where the birds were already nesting. lower cost and the birds were happy

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@CololnelAngus

But these birds are unarmed.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@ColonelAngus

Certain kind of fool, maybe.

pak152
pak152

@TheRuddSki not bald eagles. any bald eagle feathers carcasses must be turned over to the federal government
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/eagle/protect/laws.html

although the federal government recently granted the wind farms dispensation for the killing of raptors including eagles

'The punishment for killing a golden or bald eagle in the United States comes at a hefty price. Simply having eagle feathers or parts in your possession will land you in prison with a heavy fine to pay. Felony killing of eagles comes with a fine of $250,000 and prison time. These penalties fall under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act."
http://townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2013/12/06/obama-administration-about-to-give-kill-as-many-eagles-as-you-want-pass-to-wind-farms-n1758668
" the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has quietly granted a California wind energy farm a permit to kill a limited number of endangered bald and golden eagles that get sliced up in its giant turbines. But last week’s free pass is sparking anger from wildlife advocates and from free market advocates who ask why they don’t qualify for the same dispensation."


Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/jul/2/california-grants-wind-industry-permit-to-kills-ea/#ixzz37UCJGq9U
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

Lorlee
Lorlee

@pak152 @Lorlee Certainly please free to suggest that to them -- I am sure all the people who have been involved here know absolutely nothing about eagles and would love to have the benefit of your wisdom.


TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@pak152

There is tragic, senseless death and there is politically-correct death.

Politically-correctly killed wildlife is more edible, tho.

pak152
pak152

@Lorlee that's right we need more NIHism here in Texas

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