Golden Eagle Survey

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$30,000
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$30,000
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
Recipient
National Eagle Center
Recipient Type
Non-Profit Business/Entity
Status
Completed
Start Date
July 2011
End Date
June 2014
Activity Type
Digitization/Online Information Access
Education/Outreach/Engagement
Inventory
Mapping
Monitoring
Counties Affected
Dakota
Fillmore
Goodhue
Houston
Olmsted
Rice
Wabasha
Winona
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 03e
Appropriation Language

$30,000 the first year and $30,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the commissioner of natural resources for an agreement with the National Eagle Center to increase the understanding of golden eagles in Minnesota through surveys and education. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$30,000
Direct expenses
$30,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
0.67
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 03e
Appropriation Language

$30,000 the first year and $30,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the commissioner of natural resources for an agreement with the National Eagle Center to increase the understanding of golden eagles in Minnesota through surveys and education. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$30,000
Direct expenses
$30,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
0.67
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Project Overview

PROJECT OVERVIEW
Not previously thought to be regular inhabitants of Minnesota, in recent years there have been reports of golden eagle sightings in most counties of the state, while recent surveys suggest there is now a regular wintering population in the blufflands of southeast Minnesota. This appropriation is being used to better understand the numbers, distribution, migration routes, and habitat needs of golden eagles in Minnesota. This information will inform natural resource management decisions and be used to educate landowners and the general public about golden eagles in the state.

OVERALL PROJECT OUTCOME AND RESULTS
The Golden Eagle Survey Project represents groundbreaking research on a bird that was previously not thought to be a regular inhabitant of Minnesota. Through field observations and telemetry, the Golden Eagle Survey Project is expanding the understanding of population, distribution, habitats, habitat use, migration routes, breeding areas, and management needs of the population of golden eagles that winter in Minnesota.

Annual surveys coordinated by the Golden Eagle Survey Project have documented a regular migratory population using the bluffland subsection of the Paleozoic Plateau in southeast Minnesota in winter. During annual winter surveys in 2012-2014, an average of 36 golden eagles have been observed in Minnesota's blufflands.

Using satellite telemetry to track golden eagles, the Project is expanding the world's knowledge of the range, location of breeding territories, and migration routes of this previously unstudied population. One golden eagle, #46, was released in January 2011 with a GPS satellite-linked transmitter. The Project tracked #46 for more than 950 days, from his release in Wabasha County and his migrations to Nunavut, Canada and back to wintering range in southeast Minnesota. Data collected on golden eagle habitat use, preferred prey, and range will be used to ensure appropriate management and conservation action to protect critical wintering habitat for golden eagles in Minnesota.

Thousands of people have learned about the presence of golden eagles in Minnesota through the Golden Eagle Survey Project's outreach to landowners, wildlife managers and the general public. In programs at the National Eagle Center and throughout the state, the Golden Eagle Project increased awareness and understanding of golden eagles as regular winter inhabitants of the blufflands region. The Project's outreach to conservation professionals and the general public continues to broaden awareness of this unique species in Minnesota.

PROJECT RESULTS USE AND DISSEMINATION<
Golden Eagle Survey Project data are publicly available on the National Eagle Center's website. Since January, 2012, the National Eagle Center's website has seen nearly 30,000 unique visits to the Golden Eagle Survey Project information pages. Here visitors learn about the presence of golden eagles in Minnesota, view data and project maps, and learn how they can get involved in efforts to understand and conserve golden eagles in Minnesota. In addition, updates on golden eagle tracking are posted on social media outlets, reaching an audience of more than 10,000 followers.

Detailed data from field observations, Annual Wintering Golden Eagle Surveys, and telemetry are made available to researchers and others upon request. Thus far, we have shared this data with at least one utility seeking information on golden eagle migration and habitat use in siting transmission lines.

The Golden Eagle Survey Project has been regularly featured in regional news media throughout the Project's duration. An attached list highlights some of the regional news stories about the Golden Eagle Survey Project. Links to the story are provided where available. In 2013, the Golden Eagle Project shared in the US Forest Service's Wings Across America award for work as part of the Eastern Golden Eagle Working Group. In January 2014, Minnesota DNR's monthly magazine Conservation Volunteer featured a cover story about the Golden Eagle Survey Project's work and golden eagles in Minnesota.

Project Details
Project Manager
First Name
Scott
Last Name
Mehus
Organization Name
National Eagle Center
Street Address
50 Pembroke Ave
City
Wabasha
State
MN
Zip Code
55981
Phone
(651) 565-4989
Email
jeff@nationaleaglecenter.org