Advocates Push To Save Eagle Nesting Land From Developers in Florida

by Shelby Scott
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Humans aren’t the only ones struggling to find housing in the current market crisis. Now, in Pembroke Pines, Florida, a pair of nesting eagles face potential eviction as developers seek to claim the land the couple has claimed as their own. Wildlife enthusiasts and activists have taken action to ensure the safety of the birds.

According to CBS Miami, wildlife enthusiasts have been observing the pair of majestic birds at Pembroke Pines for years. Now, Florida land developers have put an eye to the area that the eagles have called their own. And it has many worried that it puts both the birds and their young in danger. And advocates are left to find a solution should developers come into possession of the land.

Phil Martin is one of the volunteers for the local Audubon Florida Eagle Watch. He said, “It’s important that people have affordable housing but it’s also important that we take care of our wildlife.”

Each year, Martin and other volunteers take to the Pride and Jewel Bald Eagles of Pembroke Pines Facebook page. There, enthusiasts get to observe the nesting couple and their eggs. But with the housing crisis ensuing, maintaining the available land for the eagles has become even more necessary.

A fellow bird watcher, David Mendez, said, “The main thing that I love about [the eagles] is the people that I meet here.”

With so many Floridians concerned for the eagles’ welfare, it definitely contributes to greater community involvement and engagement.

Wildlife Advocates Push to ‘Redesignate’ the Land

According to Angelo Castillo, Commissioner for Pembroke Pines, the Florida land that the pair of nesting eagles has claimed as their home was acquired by the city “in lieu of taxes.”

“Going back to the late 1980s,” he shared with the outlet, “this was actually going to be a housing development and the developer couldn’t pay the taxes, so we took the land.”

Now, it appears more developers have new plans, and the finances to afford them.

Castillo further suggested, “It could save an educational purpose so the kids could understand what nature is about, it could be a wetlands mitigation bank.”

Essentially, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency states that wetland mitigation encompasses designating the restoration, establishment, or enhancement of a local body of water. Its purpose is to make up for the loss of other similar bodies elsewhere.

If this were to occur in Pembroke Pines, activists would not only be able to better protect our nesting eagles. It would also maintain the safety of nearby wildlife and ecosystems which occupy the area.

Of the area, the commissioner stated, “We currently have 170,000 residents, but we want to make sure the only residents on this property are these bald eagles.”

Eagle sightings across the U.S. are often rare and spectacular. However, without the interference of wildlife activists, it’s very possible the species’ resurging population could again fall.

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