Bald eagles successfully made it off the endangered species list, but seeing one and having enough time to record it doesn’t happen every day. In a recently resurfaced video, a bald eagle was seen bobbing up and down as he swam to the New Hampshire shoreline.
Tyler Blake from Laconia got to work on Monday morning in Wolfeboro and saw something in the lake. He soon found out that it was a bald eagle and decided to video it. He posted the video on Facebook and it went viral.
“Just to see how uncanny it is, for it to be, like, a human doing the breaststroke, it’s just amazing. I ran down to the docks, and I saw an eagle flapping in the water,” he said. “I’m, like, ‘Wow!’”
“I wasn’t sure if it was hurt or something,” he added. “The thought had never crossed my mind that an eagle would swim in the water like that, but now that I’ve been exposed to it, it makes sense.”
Chris Martin, an Audubon biologist from the area, watched the video and said the bald eagle appears to be alright and that it is “most likely swimming with a large fish in his talons,” WMUR 9 News reported.
“In fact, it was performing very well. Clearly, its wings are in good shape, and it’s hunting, probably for young in the nest right now and eating what it can, and then it will carry the rest back,” Martin said. “If the swim is too far, they’ll actually stop in the water, pause with their wings out and rest, and then swim some more.”
The bald eagle is the national symbol for the United States. In 1963, only 417 pairs were in existence, forcing them to be put on the endangered species list. After intense conservation efforts, the beautiful bird was successfully removed from the list.
In the right environment, a bald eagle can have a lifespan of about 50 years. Bald eagles can weight up to 14 pounds with an impressive wingspan of up to 8.5 feet. The females are usually larger than males with a somewhat broader wingspan, according to Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute.
Martin estimates that “the bald eagle population is growing by about 10 percent per year in New Hampshire, making it more likely to see them flying or even swimming.”