Virginia Ecological Services
Northeast Region

Project Reviews in Virginia

Step 6a - Eagle Nests

The bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) is protected by the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (Eagle Act).  Follow the steps below to determine if an Eagle Act permit may be necessary.  The Eagle Act protects both bald and golden eagles from take and disturbance. Under some circumstances the Eagle Act may allow take of bald and golden eagles with a permit.  The bald eagle nesting (breeding) season in Virginia is from December 15 through July 15.

(A). Determine if the action area intersects with a bald eagle nest buffer.  The Center for Conservation Biology VaEagles Nest Locator provides the locations of active bald eagle nests in Virginia.

(NOTE: For projects that have blasting or other loud noise components, the buffer distance around eagle nests and concentration areas is 2,640 feet (half mile) or up to 5,280 feet (one mile) in open areas. Refer to the National Bald Eagle Management Guidelines.)

  1. If the action area is not within 660 feet (201 meters) of a bald eagle nest, add "bald eagle" to the species/resource name column and add “unlikely to disturb nesting bald eagles” to the conclusion column in the species conclusions table.  Print the VaEagles Map and add it to the project review package.  Continue to Step 6B.

  2. If the action area is within 660 feet (201 meters) of a bald eagle nest, determine whether the proposed action may disturb the nesting eagle by following the steps in the Service's Region 5 bald eagle management guidelines and conservation measures web review process.  Provide the nestcode (e.g., nest identifier JC0905) from VaEagles website in the notes/documentation column of the species conclusion table.

    (a). If you are able to implement the recommendations in the guidelines, add "bald eagle" to the species/resource name column and add “unlikely to disturb nesting bald eagles” to the conclusion column in the species conclusions table.  Document recommendations you adopted to avoid disturbance in the notes/documentation column of the species conclusions table, and add any additional documents/documentation to the project review package.  Continue to Step 6B.

    (b). If you are unable to implement the recommendations in the guidelines, add "bald eagle" to the species/resource name column and add “may disturb nesting bald eagles” to the conclusion column in the species conclusions table.  Provide an explanation of why the recommendations cannot be implemented in the notes/documentation column of the species conclusions table, and add this to the project review package. Continue to Step 6B.

Project Reviews
Introduction
Step 1 - Action Area

Step 2 - Official Species List
Step 3 - State Coordination
Step 4 - Suitable Habitat
Step 5 - Critical Habitat
Step 6a - Eagle Nests
Step 6b - Eagle Concentration Areas
Step 7 - Determinations

Step 8 - Project Review Package


Endangered Species

- Species in Virginia
- Species by County/City
- Species Fact Sheets


Critical Habitat
- What is it ?
- Critical Habitat Mapper

Permits & HCPs
- Endangered Species Permits
- Warren Co. Power Station Low Effect HCP

General Info
- Plants and the ESA
- Bald Eagle Information
- Mussel Guidelines
- Northern Long-eared Bat Interim Conference and Planning Guidance (PDF - 1.2MB)

Communication Towers
- Service Guidance on the Siting, Construction, Operation and Decommissioning of Communication Towers

Surveys/Habitat Assessments
- Approved Surveyors (for federally listed species & karst geology in Virginia)
- How to be a Surveyor
- Optimal Survey Times: PLANTS
- How long is an ANIMAL survey valid?
- How long is a PLANT survey valid?
- 2014 Indiana Bat Summer Survey Guidance

Last updated: January 27, 2014
All images by FWS unless otherwise noted.