Advertisement

Higher Mississippi River turns the Bonnet Carre Spillway into a bald eagle paradise

Eagles gather in the spillway by the dozens
Juvenile bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway
Juvenile bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway(John Snell | John Snell)
Published: Apr. 19, 2022 at 3:11 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Higher Mississippi River levels in recent weeks, timed coincidentally with nesting season, drew bald eagles by the dozens to the Bonnet Carre Spillway.

While the spillway has remained closed, river water flowed through gaps in the spillway pins, creating mini-waterfalls and ponds within the spillway and pushing fish from the river through the gates.

That has made catching a meal an easier task for eagles and other species, including young birds just learning to hunt.

Bald eagles compete for real estate in the Bonne Carre Spillway
Bald eagles compete for real estate in the Bonne Carre Spillway(WVUE)

The river levels have fallen in recent days, but the National Weather Service predicts the Mississippi will rise in coming days, from the 11.69 feet at the Carrollton gauge Tuesday afternoon to 12.3 feet on April 28.

Bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway
Bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway(John Snell)

Eagles nest in the winter months in South Louisiana and generally fly north by May or June.

Bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway
Bald eagles in the Bonnet Carre Spillway(WVUE)
A flock of white-faced ibis in the Bonnet Carre Spillway
A flock of white-faced ibis in the Bonnet Carre Spillway(WVUE)
White pelicans scramble for a fish in the Bonnet Carre Spillway
White pelicans scramble for a fish in the Bonnet Carre Spillway(WVUE)

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Click Here to report it. Please include the headline.

Copyright 2022 WVUE. All rights reserved.