For Immediate Release - January 07, 2010

MassWildlife's Winter Bald Eagle Survey Friday, January 8


WHAT: On Friday, January 8, 2010, officials from the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (MassWildlife) - a Department of Fish and Game (DFG) agency - will conduct a statewide eagle survey of the coast and major rivers, lakes, and reservoirs. The Massachusetts survey is part of an annual nationwide Midwinter Bald Eagle Survey that began December 30, 2009 and runs through January 13, 2010. DFG Commissioner Mary Griffin will view eagles in an area of MassWildlife's southeast district.

Members of the media are welcome to join teams of volunteers and MassWildlife staff while they conduct ground surveys.

Preliminary totals for Friday's eagle count will be available between 3:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. by calling or e-mailing Catherine Williams at the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (contact information above).

WHEN: Friday, January 8, 2010 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

WHO: Fisheries & Wildlife staff are available to answer questions or report sightings on Friday.

  • Westborough Field Headquarters: Dr. Tom French, Assistant Director of Natural Heritage and Endangered Species. French can discuss facts and figures on past surveys or eagle restoration and natural history.
  • Connecticut Valley District: Marion Larson, MassWildlife Outreach Coordinator, will be at the Quabbin Reservoir's Enfield Lookout in Belchertown from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • Central District: Bridgett McAlice, MassWildlife biologist, will be surveying the Wachusett Reservoir and may get reports from other observers in Worcester County.
  • Northeast District: Erik Amati, MassWildlife biologist, will be part of the ground crew covering the Merrimack River area and available at 2:30 p.m. at the Cashman Park Boat Ramp in Newburyport.
  • Southeast District: From 10-Noon, DFG Commissioner Mary Griffin will be with Kathleen (Betty) Anderson, Chair of MassWildlife Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Advisory Committee and DFW Wildlife Biologist Dick Turner. Both will be either at Long Point Road on the causeway between Pocksha Pond and Great Quitticas Pond in Lakeville/Middleborough or in the Winberg's Hardware parking lot on Rte 105 in Lakeville/Middleborough.
  • Southeast District: Jason Zimmer, MassWildlife district supervisor, will be checking the Wattuppa Ponds and Westport River area.
  • Western District: Tony Gola, MassWildlife biologist, will be in the MassWildlife Dalton office for area eagle restoration information.

WHERE: Best eagle viewing opportunities include:

  • Belchertown - Enfield Lookout at Quabbin Reservoir. Eagles can be viewed at a long distance.
  • West Boylston, Clinton, Sterling, Boylston - Wachusett Reservoir. Eagles can sometimes be viewed at a long distance from Routes 140 or Route 70.
    DIRECTIONS: Click for directions to the Quabbin Reservoir; click here for directions to the Wachusett Reservoir.
  • Lakeville/Middleborough - Long Point Road on the causeway between Pocksha Pond and Great Quitticas Pond. Eagles can be viewed at a long distance.
  • Newburyport - Merrimack River at Cashman Park Boat Ramp or at Deer Island off Rte 1A (from the chain bridge) Newburyport. These are both good areas for eagles to be seen fairly close without the need of a spotting scope.
  • Pockshaw / Great Quitticas Ponds on Long Point Road, Lakeville/Middleborough
    • From Rte 495, take Exit 4, Rte 105 south.
    • Follow 105 through Lakeville center and past Assawompsett Pond on left.
    • Stay straight when Rte 18 turns right.
    • Take left on Long Point Road and follow across causeway between Pocksha and Great Quittacas ponds.
  • Boston to Deer Island, Amesbury on the Merrimack River, near Salisbury/Newburyport town line
    • (GPS Input: 10 Deer Island Street, Amesbury)
    • Route 1 North to I-95 North (Lynnfield/Peabody area).
    • I-95 North to Exit 57. Turn right off exit ramp onto Route 113 East (Storey Avenue in Newburyport).
    • Take 113 East (Storey Avenue) about ½ mile and turn left onto Moseley Avenue.
    • Follow to end (about ½ mile) and bear right onto Main Street, Spofford Street, or Deer Island Street-it is listed as all three depending on source.
    • Follow a very short distance over the Essex-Merrimac Chain Bridge, which leads to Deer Island (Deer Island Street).
    • Park on Deer Island. If parking is unavailable, turn around and park at Moseley Woods Park on right just after crossing the Chain Bridge.
  • Deer Island to Cashman Park, Newburyport
    • Take road back over Chain Bridge into Newburyport and take first left into Merrimac Street.
    • Follow Merrimac Street about 1 and ½ miles.
    • Look for signs to Cashman Park on left. This is a city park that includes an Office of Fishing and Boating Access boat ramp. If you pass Route 1, you have gone too far.

RAIN DATE: Foul weather will postpone the survey to Tuesday, January, 12, 2009. Call or e-mail Catherine Williams at the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (contact information above) for rescheduling information.

OTHER INFO: Birders and other wildlife enthusiasts are encouraged to notify MassWildlife if they see eagles from December 30, 2009 through January 13, 2010. Reports of eagle sightings can be made by email at or by postal service to "Eagle Survey," MassWildlife, Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program, 1 Rabbit Hill Road, Westborough, MA, 01581. Please provide date, time, location, and town of eagle sightings, plus the number of birds, whether juvenile or adult, and, observer's contact information.