Now for the birds that command the sky and don’t give hoot I am down below.
More and more eagles are here on Nature and Wildlife Pics and coming up on Garden Walk Garden Talk. I have enough images of eagles of all ages to write a book. But don’t pick up that eagle feather to use as a book marker! Did you know a person can not own eagle feathers unless they are of Native American ancestry? There is a federal fine up to $25,000 for anyone else! If you find an eagle feather, you must let it lie or give it to the authorities. If you want one, there are special requirements and a repository where you get one.
Eagles have about 7000 feathers and they get new ones at every molt. When on a hike, I like to find feathers of different birds among other things like fossils, stones and colored beach glass. Below, the brown turkey feather I found on a recent walk can be confused for an eagle feather. An eagle feather has a solid shaft rather than the striped of the turkey. It also has white dots along the shaft if it is an eagle feather.
It probably is best to leave feathers in place since the law even includes all raptors, all body parts from most migratory birds, endangered or threatened species, and is a violation of state and federal law.
You can’t even own a hawk feather. If you see an eagle or red-tailed hawk feather lying on the ground, don’t pick it up to take it home. Some very close family member may be bailing you out of jail.
I guess the federal and state governments have a point. It really seems excessive to throw people in jail or levy a hefty fine for bringing home a feather, but state wildlife officers have no easy way to determine how feathers are obtained by people. The law applies for birds protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, a pact signed by the United States, Canada and Mexico to prevent the killing of birds by plume hunters.
Another thing you might find interesting is that eagles sound like squeak toys when they call. The high-pitched call is a very small intimidation, so much so that when movie studios use eagles in film, they have dubbed in the Red-tailed Hawk calls as a substitute. I know when I first heard the eagle call, I thought it had laryngitis.
The more I learn about these birds, the magic of them slowly erodes.
On Garden Walk Garden Talk – See frozen Niagara Falls.