American Bald Eagle Foundation     January 2020

(e)agle newsletter

First Friday Haines School Art Show

Haines celebrates the first Friday of every month with events around town and businesses staying open a little later to allow people to socialize, shop, and support local businesses. The ABEF participated in the December First Friday by hosting the Haines School Art Show in the natural history museum. 

The art showcased a variety of projects created by students from at the school. The art spanned from portraits to landscapes to collages of wildlife. Many locals from town came to see the show, which had refreshments, as well as stickers and cards for sale to support the Junior class. Thank you to art teacher Giselle Miller and the Haines art students for coming and showing off your amazing work for First Friday!
Winter at the ABEF
Once the cruise ships depart for the year in late September and the Alaska Bald Eagle Festival wraps up in early November, winter at the ABEF begins. Business hours shift as days shortens to roughly six hours of sunlight for most of December and January.  Staff is hard at work as locals take advantage of their year-round free admission to explore the natural history museum and raptor center outside of the tourist season.

Winters may be slower for programming, but that gives staff the opportunity to build new behaviors in the raptor center and create new exhibits and interpretation in the natural history museum. The ABEF has the unique opportunity of an entire season to dedicate to professional and facility improvement compared to the busier parts of the year. Already this winter, the natural history museum hosted the Haines School Art Show mentioned above and got started on building a new indoor aviary for temporary winter housing in the large eagle aviary. Staff is excited for new projects and opportunities which will no doubt pop up as the season continues.

Eagle Transfer
The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) and Tongass Historical Museum worked with the Curator of Collections Katie Dickerson at the ABEF this month to transport three specimens back to the ABEF. The Malaspina, a ferry that transports travelers through Southeast Alaska, has hosted an ABEF exhibit featuring two bald eagles and a black-billed magpie since 1995. The ship was taken out of service for an unspecified length of time this December in order to properly care for the specimens Dickerson wanted to get the birds back to the ABEF while the ferry was in dry dock.

The eagles and magpie were taken off exhibit, transferred to the Tongass Historical Museum awaiting a different ferry traveling up to Haines. They were carefully wrapped and placed in their very own cabin on the Matanuska for their final ride to Haines. When they arrived at the dock, Dickerson and ABEF intern Ali Gustavson unloaded the specimens and brought them safely back to the Foundation. Thank you to the AMHS and the Tongass Historical Museum in making Operation: “Bird Grab” a success!

2019 Donors

The ABEF would like to thank the members, ambassador sponsors, and other donors who generously donated in 2019. As a non-profit, the natural history museum and raptor center rely on the generosity of caring people to help staff carry out our mission. 

This year, donor support helped the ABEF accomplish many special projects. We purchased telemetry equipment to get our free-flight program off the ground, completed our wheelchair-accessible boardwalk and resting benches in the aviaries making navigation easier and safer for all guests, and completed several exhibit updates and intern interpretation projects. As the ABEF continues to grow, donor contributions offer invaluable support for our conservation education work. 
Species Spotlight:
Canada Lynx
The Canada lynx ( Lynx canadensis ) is the only species of cat found in Alaska. Although sometimes confused with the bobcat who ranges from southern Canada to Mexico, a few obvious characteristics set the two apart. The Canada lynx is distinct because of their large, furred feet that act as snowshoes to traverse deep snow and the thin, dark tufts on the tips of their ears. They have grizzled brown/gray fur and average between 15 and 30 pounds.

This species can be found throughout Alaska, Canada and small portions of the Northern United States. Their main prey is the snowshoe hare, being so dependent on them that when the hare population declines or increases, lynx populations follow a few years later. Canada lynx live in boreal forests populated with conifers, making much of Alaska and Canada prime habitat for this illusive species.
When you become a member of the American Bald Eagle Foundation, you’re helping to fund educational programs such as our Youth Raptor Program, reduced price programs for low-income families or groups, as well as the resources we need to give our avian ambassadors the best possible care via husbandry, enrichment and training. Interested in joining?   113 Haines Highway Haines, AK 99827 907.766.3094