As part of a bird count being conducted nationwide, the Buffalo Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management is asking for volunteers to help with the 2014 Midwinter Bald Eagle Survey. It'll be held on Saturday, Jan. 11.
A total of 2,042 eagles have been counted since surveys of the Powder River Basin began in 2006. During last year’s survey, 59 volunteers counted 310 eagles throughout the basin, including 179 bald eagles.
The national survey was established in 1979 by the National Wildlife Federation to develop a winter population index of bald eagles in the lower 48 states and to identify previously unrecognized winter habitats.
The information and request for volunteers comes from the local land management office. For the local effort, volunteers will be asked to count eagles along standard routes in order to identify population trends. The standard routes are distributed across the Powder River Basin and follow public roads.
Volunteers are encouraged to preregister for survey routes, by calling Charlotte Darling by Friday, January 3, at 307-684-1045. Preregistration is especially encouraged for routes in both Johnson and Sheridan counties. Any routes that are not assigned, during preregistration, will be available at the public meetings, which will be held in Buffalo, Sheridan and Gillette, on the nights of Jan. 7-9. The meetings are held to discuss methodology, identification and distribution of survey materials. The meeting times and dates are posted below.
Jan. 7 – Buffalo, BLM Field Office, 1425 Fort Street
Jan. 8 – Sheridan, County Library, 335 West Alger
Jan. 9 – Gillette, County Library, 2101 4-J Road
Meetings will be held from 7 to 8 p.m.