They adorn everything from our money to our seals of office, but so many of us have never gotten to see a real, live bald eagle. Well, if you live in Nebraska, this is the perfect time of year to do just that. It's also a great excuse to get out of the house this winter and spend some time outside with your family. Although bald eagles can be seen year-round across the state, winter and early spring are the best times to see them in abundance.
You see, in the winter, there often are concentrations of bald eagles feeding on fish and sick or wounded waterfowl at reservoirs that have some open water. Favored sites include Sutherland Reservoir near Sutherland, Harlan County Reservoir near Alma, and below Gavins Point Dam near Yankton, S.D. Lake Ogallala and Lake McConaughy near Ogallala also are top viewing sites, and the Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District has a viewing building near the dam spillway. The power and irrigation district also has a viewing site at its J-2 power plant near Lexington. More information on that facility is at cnppid.com.
What do you need, besides warm clothing? Not much. You'll want some sort of optic, like your hunting binoculars or a spotting scope. You may also wish to bring a camera with a zoom lens. Just be sure not to approach or disturb any eagles, as they are protected by federal law. For more information about bald eagles in Nebraska, visit OutdoorNebraska.org.