Bald Eagles and Snow Geese? DWR Has Some Wild Winter Fun Planned
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) was in recently for the Wildside program on the radio and talked about some upcoming events that will give us the opportunity to enjoy the wildlife we have here in southern Utah. Adam Kavalunas, the Outreach Manager for the Southern Region, and Johnny Neil, Wildlife Recreation Specialist for the Southern Region of the DWR told us about some of the events we can enjoy in the next few weeks.
“The first one we are going to talk about, we have our Bald Eagle Day scheduled. It's going to be on Friday, February 2nd. We are doing something a little bit different than we have done in the past,” Neil Said “So normally we would hold the event, it'd be a morning event from 8:00 in the morning until noon and. We kind of found the last few years...I don't know if the bald Eagles are just getting, like more skittish or whatnot, but like we pull up to the do the event, and then you know by the time 8:00 hits, they kind of like, fly away for the day.”
To address the issue of the birds flying off, the DWR will be changing the time of Bald Eagle Day this year. Instead of a morning event, the activity will be from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Bald Eagle Day will take place at Rush Lake Ranch, situated at 9600 N. Minersville Highway (State Route 130), approximately 12 miles north of Cedar City.
I personally like to hear about Bald Eagle Day, because it has always indicated to me that we are making our way through winter, and that spring will make it here. Plus, there is a perk for those who make their way to Bald Eagle Day. Attendees can snag a free collectible Bald Eagle Month pin, available while supplies last.
But Bald Eagle Day is not the only wildlife observation event happening in the first quarter. A few weeks later, one of the more unique opportunities to observe a truly magnificent migration event will take place in Delta, Utah.
“Yep, the Snow goose festival,” Neil told Us. “So that's another event we're having. It's (the) last weekend in February, so it's February 23rd and 24th in Delta. You know they have a lot of other stuff going on at the Snow Goose festival. Like we'll be out on the reservoir helping people find geese, (and the town of Delta will) have, like a craft fair and some of (the people) like the in town events (that) are a little bit like a different time. Like on Friday I think they start like 3:00 PM. But as far as us, we will be there. We usually get there at 9:00 AM (at) the reservoir. And then we're there until the geese leave.”
Snow geese, known for their striking white plumage and black wingtips, embark on an extraordinary journey each year. Their migration covers thousands of miles, showcasing the remarkable endurance and navigational skills of these avian travelers. If you haven’t taken the opportunity to attend the Snow Goose Festival, it really is an experience that I recommend. Plus, Delta really puts out the welcome mat.
Neil went on to explain, “I mean, we're talking 10 to 15,000 geese all in one spot and to see them take off in the mornings, they'll be in the fields. Then they kind of head to the reservoir and spend most of the day at the reservoir and then the afternoon again, they kind of take off and head out to feed you know for the evening.” It really is cool to see.
One other thing our friends from the DWR wanted us to know about was the upcoming release of the “application guidebook for big game hunting,” Neil said. He continued, “You know, this is the time of year where a lot of people are starting to get, I guess, antsy and they kind of want to, you know, start researching, like, what hunts am I going to put in for? How many points do I have doing all that sort of (thing) And so the guidebook will come out on February 7th online for everyone to see. And then, you know, if you want a physical copy, we should be getting them, I think around like the 16th of February, and we'll distribute them around town and everywhere that gets the guidebook.
The online edition will be available at wildlife.utah.gov.
So, if the winter blues have you down, get out and enjoy Bald Eagle Day and the Snow Goose Festival. It’s a good reminder that the more active days of spring and summer are on the way.
You can listen to our segment with our DWR friends below.
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