Inspiring symbol or ‘nuisance bird’?

  • Posted: Thursday, October 17, 2013 12:01 a.m., Updated: Thursday, October 17, 2013 9:49 a.m.

The bald eagle has come back strong across the land, including right here in the Lowcountry. That’s a soaring testament to our national symbol’s endurance — and vivid evidence of responsible environmental policies’ priceless benefits.

But while most Americans rightly welcome that resurgence, a Michigan woman is demanding relief from a bald eagle that she says is “terrorizing” dogs in her neighborhood.

As WNEM-TV in Saginaw, Mich., reported last week, Tier Bieri of Sebewaing said a bald eagle that her daughter dubbed “Derrick” has become a “nuisance bird” on their street.

According to Ms. Bieri: “I left my two dogs outside and my smaller dog was attacked by an eagle. And then as the eagle was taking off with the dog, my Jack Russell attacked the eagle and both dogs got away.”

The concerned pet owner wants the menacing intruder ousted from her neighborhood.

But as she said: “He’s federally protected. I’ve called the DNR, the Sebewaing police, and they pretty much say there’s nothing they can do because the eagle’s not injured.”

Karen Cleveland, a bird expert at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, confirmed the eagle’s special status.

However, Ms. Cleveland also offered this advice that could come in handy for not just Michiganders but South Carolinians if a bald eagle becomes a threat to a pet:

“Clap your hands and yell at the bird when you see the bird around, bang on a pot when you see the bird around, go out there with an umbrella, flap the umbrella opened and closed to try and spook the bird off just so it doesn’t feel settled around people.”

Just make sure other folks know why you’re clapping, yelling, banging a pot and flapping an umbrella.

Otherwise, they might assume you’re a nuisance human.

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