I remember my first Bald Eagle very well. I was on summer holidays near lake Champlain in Vermont (US) to do some kayaking with my partner when we saw an Osprey being chased off by a massive Bald Eagle minutes after arriving at the scene. Bald eagles are a symbolic species. They have been immortalized in North American culture and history in statues, flags, paintings, books and stories. However, the reality is often quite different. As with many birds of prey species, bioaccumulation of pesticides in body tissues and intense hunting has been devastating for local populations, but we are slowly improving and numbers are going up again.
The proceeds of this artwork will go to Audubon Vermont, a place where Bald Eagles have made a spectacular comeback after an ambitious reintroduction program 16 years ago. Today the state hosts almost 40 territorial pairs. Audubon VT has very passionate and competent people that drive effective conservation programs across the state. I visited and met up with audubon staff Mark Labarr and Steve Hagenbuch and was really blown away by their knowledge and devotion to the projects!