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Bald Eagles Spotted in Lake County

A bald eagle was spotted on Tuesday at Independence Grove Forest Preserve in Libertyville.

Have you seen any bald eagles flying around Lake County lately?

If you have, you're not alone.

The Lake County Forest Preserves shared a photo on their Facebook page Tuesday of a bald eagle that was spotted in a tree at Independence Grove Forest Preserve in Libertyville. Commenters on that photo reported seeing bald eagles in other places, too, including at Route 173 and Kilbourne, and near Gregg's Landing in Vernon Hills.

Even more sightings were reported when the photo was shared on the Grayslake Patch Facebook page. One reader said she saw a bald eagle in Lake Zurich on Jan. 27. Another said she spotted one in Lake Villa last week, while another reader said she saw a bald eagle in Gurnee on Monday.

Mark Hurley, an environmental educator with the Lake County Forest Preserves, said it's not too uncommon to see bald eagles around Lake County.

"We do see some every winter," he said.

While there is an active bald eagle nest in the Chain O'Lakes area, Hurley said it's more likely that the eagles being spotted here in Lake County are northern birds from Canada, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Hurley said the bald eagles generally fly as far south as they need to as long as they can fish. If Lake County experiences a prolonged cold snap, the eagles will continue to fly further south. While most of the bald eagles flying south will use the Mississippi River as a guide, some follow the Lake Michigan shoreline or even the Des Plaines River.

"It's a visual for them," said Hurley. "It's open water for them."

When you have a forest preserve like Independence Grove with both open space and a big lake, that creates a promising place to see bald eagles, Hurley said.

"I agree, it's really cool," he said. "It's fun for people to see them. They're big and majestic."

Have you seen any bald eagles around Lake County? Share in the comment section.

Korrina Grom (Editor) January 31, 2013 at 07:06 PM
A comment from the Libertyville Patch Facebook page: "I saw one driving east on Lake street by Butler on Monday."
Chris Antonson January 31, 2013 at 09:23 PM
I saw one in my garage the other day. Thought it was a thief so I shot the thing. Does anyone have any creative crafting ideas i could use the feathers for?! Thanks.
Vortex January 31, 2013 at 09:54 PM
It's all fun and games until someone's cute little shih tzu gets air-lifted out of the dog park in an eagle's talons.....
Moe @ the Buck January 31, 2013 at 10:23 PM
What kind of vehicle was it driving? An Eagle talon?
Robert Kosin February 01, 2013 at 02:13 AM
The return of this magnificent bird is not just limited to northern Lake County and Des Plaines watershed. Photos are posted of a bald eagle in the branches along the Fox River in northern Kane seen late fall of 2012. Neither the fishermen nor the eagle seems surprised by the other.
Terry Bangs February 01, 2013 at 03:10 PM
They are magnificent, and the fact that sightings are becoming more common is a great sign that our national symbol is back from the brink of extinction. But as the eagles grow in number, keep an eye on your pets. Small dogs and cats make excellent snacks for eagles, especially if fishing is poor.
Charles February 01, 2013 at 03:13 PM
I live on one of the small lakes in the Wildwood area. Last weekend I caught a glimpse of a fairly large bird pass low through the backyard. It was only for a split second but I remember seeing a white head and neck and thinking, "Did I just see what I thought I saw?". I have never seen any around here so I just passed it off as to me seeing things, but now after reading this, I'm wondering if it was one. I've seen many Bald Eagles in northern Wi.
Smart Alec February 01, 2013 at 03:23 PM
I didn't know that bald eagles could drive. :-) Sorry. I couldn't resist.
Charles February 01, 2013 at 06:54 PM
uh oh... I can see the "kill the coyote crowd" gathering up their forces if this happens when the first couple of "little Snugims" get carried off into the skies.
Moe @ the Buck February 01, 2013 at 09:39 PM
Nothing's more patriotic than sacrificing your small dog or cat to to the American bald eagle! Makes a hell of a YouTube video if you can catch it on camera. Charlie, Im trying to have more heart and compassion towards coyotes since we last commented. I started"hugs for coyotes" program. We catch them live, give um a hug, the release them on a private property next to a small lake in Wildwood. Just kidding. Hope all's well. Keep holding the front lines on the firearms for us.
Charles February 01, 2013 at 09:49 PM
Thanks Moe.... just support any number of the worthwhile 2nd amendment organizations out there. ISRA is a good one as is Second Amendment Foundation. Right now we are very hopeful of some good changes for us in the near future. As for as the "yotes".... if they bother you... get rid of them. I just like making fun of the PETA and soccer mom types who think Mr. Wile e Coyote is going to get their precious little snowflakes.
Moe @ the Buck February 01, 2013 at 10:26 PM
Crazy how the money of law abiding hunters goes to the use of habitat, and restoration of wildlife through our dept. Of natural resources. Yet, most of the money from PETA goes towards the slander advertising of law abiding hunters. Could you imagine what we could do in our forest preserves if PETA was onboard? Id be interested to see the actual statistics on PETA vs law abiding hunters as far as habitat and restoration.
Dermot clarke February 02, 2013 at 02:10 AM
Saw a bald eagle today in Grayslake at the Fed Ex terminal. He was in the grass along the road. Got a good look at him when he flew off.
Doug Daluga February 06, 2013 at 03:11 AM
I think I saw one today over the south end of Grayslake. I didn't get a real good look, but there's nothing else that big around here.
Juan C. February 24, 2013 at 05:28 AM
I saw a bald eagle near Great America on Grand Rd.

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