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Eagle vs. Seagull

December 30, 2011

The McCausland family had an unexpected visitor over the holidays. A Bald Eagle has been hanging around their property, the iconic Erdenheim Farm in Montgomery County and protected through conservation easement with Natural Lands Trust. Chris McCausland was able to capture these images of the eagle just after successfully capturing a seagull.

 

Due to habitat loss and the use of a pesticide known as DDT, the number of nesting pairs of Bald Eagles in Pensylvania plummeted during the second half of the 20th century. Though DDT was banned in the United States in 1972, as recently as 1980 there were only three nesting pairs in the state.

In 2006, a major milestone was reached for Bald Eagles in the U.S. when they were removed from the federal list of Endangered Species. They are still considered a “threatened species” in Pennsylvania, but have rebounded. Protected open space for hunting and nesting — like Erdenheim Farm — is critical to their survival.

Erdenheim Farm is the crown jewel of 2,000 acres of nearly contiguous open space in the Wissahickon Valley between Fairmount Park in Philadelphia and Fort Washington State Park in Whitemarsh. In 2009, 426 acres were preserved, ensuring that the sweeping vistas remain intact… forever.

Erdenheim Farm – photo courtesy of the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania

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