The bald eagle in Arizona has experienced a large population increase since the species was listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1978. At that time, only 11 breeding pairs had been identified.
Since then, multiple studies and intensive management projects have contributed to our knowledge of the bald eagle in Arizona, and the population has grown.
This growth, not only in Arizona but nationwide, prompted the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the bald eagle from the Endangered Species Act in 2007. However, continuing threats to the population in the southwest require the continuation of protective management actions.
Tips for Visiting Eagle Areas
If you are visiting bald eagle country, an advance call to the local land management agency (U.S. Forest Service district, etc.) or the Arizona Game and Fish Department may help you plan your trip to avoid disturbing bald eagles. By following these simple guidelines, we can all help ensure that our living wildlife legacy will last for generations to come:
- Enjoy bald eagles from outside the closures, which are marked with signs and/or buoys. Watch from a distance using a spotting scope, binoculars or telephoto camera lens.
- Anyone approached by a nestwatcher and asked to cease an activity or leave a closed area should comply.
- Bald eagles protecting an active nest will let you know if you are too close. If a bald eagle is vocalizing and circling the area frantically, you are too close and need to leave the area quickly. Bald eagles incubating eggs or brooding small young should never be off the nest for more than 15 minutes.
Bald Eagle Viewing Areas
Viewing is seasonal, but you might find bald eagles at the following locations: