When we see an eagle soaring through the sky, we tend to stop whatever we were doing and just watch.
One of my most memorable moments came as stood in my own backyard in New Hampshire. With our land abutting a wetland, I had been able to watch an annual eagle nest. Just once I happened outside in time to observe an eagle teaching its eaglet to ride a thermal updraft. The little one would catch it and go up and around, but then, whoops… out it slipped, drifted back down and caught it again. On its third attempt, the eaglet “got it.” Then I watched as they both gracefully drifted up, up, up and away out of sight. It was glorious.
So, on January 10th, National Save the Eagles Day, I like to pause and thank those who have worked hard to protect eagles from extinction. Since 1787 the bald eagle has been our national symbol.
Though there are some 60 eagle species, only the bald and golden eagle are found in the U.S. Here, the eagle is a symbol of freedom, and we all know far too well how deeply freedoms are endangered around the world.
Threatened by extinction, the bald eagle began receiving special protection in 1972. By 2007 the bald eagle population had rebounded enough to be removed from the endangered species list. May freedom for everyone be so fortunate. Just like the eaglet, we must never give up.