This morning, our local paper offered some refreshingly good news: bald eagles, once-endangered, have come to Syracuse, NY's Onondaga Lake, and in surprising numbers. About two dozen have been spotted at one time, fishing an area of open water where the Wastewater Treatment Plant's treated, warm water flows out into the lake and prevents ice formation.
This is very exciting news, especially when you consider that Onondaga Lake has the dubious distinction of being one of the most polluted lakes in the United States. It's recovering, in part due to mandated efforts by industries responsible for its pollution, and in part due to Mother Nature's own efforts. In fact, the lake is cleaning itself up ahead of the schedule we mapped out for it.
My one concern among the high notes of the eagles' return is the still-high level of mercury in the lake. The effects on the eagles remain to be seen and are being monitored. Local environmental groups are also working to create a safe-range viewing station where the eagles can be observed, but not bothered. It is, no matter which way you slice it, a huge coup for Central NY and for the environment in general. Hooray!
For more on the CNY bald eagles, visit Syracuse.com's many articles on the subject: http://search.syracuse.com/bald+eagles