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Two Golden Eagle Members Participate in a Birding Adventure at Princess Anne WMA 

By Jessica Ruthenberg/DWR

Photos by Jessica Ruthenberg/DWR

On January 29, two Golden Eagle-level Restore the Wild Members participated in a birding tour of Princess Anne Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Virginia Beach as part of the Winter Wildlife Festival, an annual event held by the City of Virginia Beach that DWR partners on and sponsors. This year, DWR worked with the city to offer Restore the Wild Golden Eagles a free opportunity to participate in the festival’s Princess Anne birding trip as a thank you for the members’ generous support.  

The two Golden Eagles joined 20 other festival participants in the tour. “Thankfully, we had a beautiful morning to explore Princess Anne, and the birding was a joy, as always,” said Jessica Ruthenberg, a DWR watchable wildlife biologist who led the trip alongside two other DWR employees. “We observed 40 species of birds as well as evidence of river otters, muskrat, and other mammals. Highlight bird observations included orange-crowned warbler, an abundance of white ibis, bald eagle, northern harrier, and a bugling tundra swan fly-over. 

“It was so nice to meet a couple of our Golden Eagle members and to share this important habitat with them.” continued Ruthenberg. “Princess Anne WMA has a Restore the Wild-funded project on it, so I’m happy that these members had the opportunity to witness first-hand the wildlife and habitat that they are supporting.” In addition, the tour participants had an opportunity to see the new wildlife viewing wall installed at Princess Anne WMA, which has viewing holes cut at varying levels and overlooks three waterfowl impoundments. The wall allows for wildlife viewing without startling birds and other wildlife that may be using the impoundments. Princess Anne is one of 44 Wildlife Management Areas in Virginia that all Restore the Wild members have access to as a benefit of their membership.  

“It’s great to have a chance to showcase the work we do here,” said Princess Anne WMA Wildlife Area Manager Evan Shearer. “We have used Restore the Wild funds to put habitat work on the ground here at Princess Anne WMA.”

An image of a group of birding tour participants looking out of a wildlife viewing wall

During the birding tour, participants checked out the new wildlife viewing wall at Princess Anne WMA.

Learn more about visiting Princess Anne WMA. 

  • February 13, 2023