Press Release: Celebrating the Bald Eagle in the Mystic River Watershed

By 1905 hunting and habitat destruction had decimated the Massachusetts Bald Eagle population. Nationally, the use of DDT, a dangerous chemical insecticide introduced in the mid-20th century, caused the Bald Eagle population to decline dramatically. This chronic and exponential population loss led to our national bird arriving on the federally Endangered species list in 1967!

Valiant efforts to ban DDT and an elaborate plan to relocate forty-one Bald Eagles from Michigan and Canada to the Quabbin Reservoir in 1982 resulted in astonishing, steady population growth. Thanks to the successful relocation, and major efforts to protect and restore habitat, you can once again find this majestic bird perched in tall roost trees or gliding gracefully along the Mystic Lakes! While we celebrate one of the greatest conservation success stories of our time, our local photographers are skillfully documenting this remarkable homecoming.

On Sunday, March 25th from 3:00-5:00pm, Hunt’s Photo and Video will host a free, public reception for their Bald Eagle Exhibit, a gallery featuring 20 breathtaking Bald Eagle photographs captured by local photographers. Marj Rines and Paul Roberts, local bird experts, will share remarks on the history of Bald Eagles in and around the Mystic Lakes and the extended watershed. Three winning photographs will be announced. 

Marj Rhines, of the Menotomy Bird Club, spoke to this new phenomenon saying, “twenty years ago I still hadn’t seen a Bald Eagle on the Mystic Lakes. Around that time, my aunt who lived in Winchester called to say she had seen an eagle. I was so jealous and spent a lot of time that winter searching until I finally saw one. I was terribly excited! Since then, it has become far more routine to see them. Some winters you can see 2-3 perched in trees or on ice at the same time.” The Menotomy Bird Club has it’s origins in the early Bald Eagle appearances- local birders would often run into each other on the Mystic Lakes searching for the eagles and built a community around these experiences.

From March 1st- March 31st Hunt’s Photo and Video will also hold an online auction featuring the Bald Eagle images in the gallery. Visit the auction website (listed below) to place bids on these beautiful signed and framed photographs. Proceeds from the auction will benefit Mystic River Watershed Association, the Arlington-based environmental advocacy organization working to protect and restore the Mystic River, its tributaries, and watershed lands.

Mystic River Watershed Association is thrilled to benefit from this auction and celebrate the natural history of the Mystic River with Hunt’s Photo and Video.

Check out to view and bid on the images.