USDA tries removing eagle's nest

Jan. 21, 2013 at 1:57 PM

NORFOLK, Va., Jan. 21 (UPI) -- Wildlife officials said a bald eagle nesting near a Virginia airport has refused to move, even after his nest has been removed multiple times.

Officials at the Norfolk, Va., airport, notified state and federal wildlife officials after a bird strike killed the eagle's mate. A nest near the airport was taken down and the surviving eagle, known as "Dad Norfolk," nested at the nearby Norfolk Botanical Gardens about three months ago, The (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot said Monday.

Since then, federal wildlife officials have tried removing the nest, arguing the eagle and his new mate are still at risk of being killed by airplanes. But with eagle nesting season well under way, it would appear this pair -- along with others on the botanical garden property -- aren't going anywhere.

Supporters have urged wildlife officials to leave the birds alone and organized a silent protest at the garden.

Scott Barras, the Virginia director for wildlife with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services Division, said the work to remove the eagles for their own safety will continue.

"We wish that they would choose to nest elsewhere right away, but we're certainly prepared to continue with the management program," Barras said.

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