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EAGLE DAYS - DECEMBER 5-7 - SQUAW CREEK NWR
Midwest Region, December 7, 2008
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The 30th annual Eagle Days at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge was a huge success!  On Thursday, December 4, 3 eagles from the World Bird Sanctuary, St Louis were introduced to St. Joseph and the the surrounding area on a "Live at Five" televison program (KQ2 - Stl Joseph). Then on Friday, December 5, approximately 930 students and 100 adults attended the school day program.  Students were all able to see the live eagle program put on by the the World Bird Sanctuary at the refuge headquarters and get a bus tour of the refuge.  The rest of the public was able to see the eagle show Saturday and Sunday. 

The refuge hosted more than 250,000 snow geese, 30,000 ducks, 60 trumpeter swans and 266 bald eagles in the wild during the 3 day event.  Weather conditions were near ideal with sunny skies and day time temperatures in the low 40's.  The refuge office had displays about bald eagles, endangered species and live snakes (an Eastern massasauga rattlesnake - a candidate species).  The kids were able to play a Risky Critters and bird identification game as well as get a free eagle day poster, button and tattoo.  A wood carver was also present.

Visitation this year was the highest since 1996.  A total of 3,484 entered the office, 2,013 attended the live eagle show, 7,154 drove the auto tour route and 679 took the free guided bus tour given by the refuge staff.  The Mound City Kiwanis Club members encouraged visitors to take the free shuttle bus from the Eagle Nest Truck Plaza down to the refuge headquarters.  Three hundred and thirty-one visitors took advantage of this service.

Besides the Mound City Kiwanis Club, there were a host of other cooperators including the Ioway Tribe (permitting visitors to park and use the shuttle service and pay to rent the 25 foot inflatable eagle at the headquarters), the Missouri Department of Transportation (putting up signs on Interstae 29 and erecting a message board on Highway 159), the Friends of Squaw Creek (providing food and interpretive sales), the Burroughs and Midland Empire Audubons Societies (providing volunteers) and the Missouri Department of Conservation  (paying for most of the event and providing a host of employees and volunteers).

Service volunteers from Ottawa NWR, Prairie Wetland Learning Center, DeSoto NWR, Great River and Clarence Cannon NWR, Illinois River NWR, Windom WMD and the Litchfield WMD helped the Squaw Creek employees direct traffic, give bus tours, make buttons, put on tattoos and staff displays.

Contact Info: Ron Bell, 660/442-5754,extension 13, Ron_Bell@fws.gov



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