Ecological Services
Southeast Region


Bald Eagle Management Guidelines & Conservation Measures

Determining Whether Timber Operations and Forestry Practices will Disturb Nesting Bald Eagles

Step 1. You selected timber operations and forestry practices.

Step 2. Determining whether your activity is likely to disturb nesting bald eagles.
To avoid disturbing the breeding eagles and their young, we recommend that you do the following:

  • Avoid clear-cutting or removal of overstory trees within 330 feet(100 meters) of both active and alternate nests at any time.
  • Avoid timber harvesting operations, including road construction and chain saw and yarding operations, during the nesting season within 660 feet (200 meters) of the nest.  The distance may be decreased to 330 feet around alternate nests within a particular territory, including nests that were attended during the current nesting season but not used to raise young, after eggs laid in another nest within the territory have hatched.
  • Selective thinning and other silviculture management practices designed to conserve or enhance habitat, including prescribed burning close to the nest tree, should be undertaken outside the nesting season. 
  • If burning during the nesting season is necessary, do the following:
    • Conduct burns only when adult eagles and young are absent from the nest tree (i.e., at the beginning of, or end of, the nesting season, either before the particular nest is active or after the young have fledged from that nest). 
    • Take precautions such as raking leaves and woody debris from around the nest tree to prevent crown fire or fire climbing the nest tree.
  • Avoid construction of log transfer facilities and in-water log storage areas within 330 feet (100 meters) of active and alternate nests nest.


    - I can implement the recommendations.

      If you are able to implement these recommendations, disturbance of nesting bald eagles is unlikely to occur. We recommend printing this page and signing dating it for your records.

    - I cannot implement the recommendations.



Date: _____________________________________

These recommendations are valid only for the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

Once you print a copy of this page send to appropriate ES Field Station
(for addresses go to



Last updated: June 28, 2007

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