Are you Ready for a Summer Giveaway?
We are celebrating summer with a giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a copy of Stan Tekiela’s brand-new book Bald Eagles: The Ultimate Raptors and a copy of the United States Constitution, a document printed on parchment paper antiqued through a process exclusive to the National Archives.
The Bald Eagle —The National Symbol of the United States
The United States first adopted the Bald Eagle as its national symbol in 1782, depicting it on the Great Seal of America.
Many of our founding fathers revered the Bald Eagle. Thomas Jefferson said the eagle was “a free spirit, high soaring and courageous.” The same did not apply to Benjamin Franklin, who wrote, “I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen as the representative of our country. He is a bird of bad moral character.”
Interestingly, famed naturalist John James Audubon did not like the raptor either. He wrote, “They exhibit a great degree of cowardice. Suffer me, kind reader, to say how much I grieve that it should have been selected as the emblem of my country.” However, on a trip up the Mississippi River in 1814, Audubon, apparently unfamiliar with the dark plumage of the juvenile Bald Eagle, misidentified one. Thinking he had discovered a new eagle species, he named it Washington Sea Eagle in honor of George Washington, describing it “the mightiest of the feathered tribe.” Audubon clearly liked this new bird, but not the adult Bald Eagle. There is no record of his comments upon finding out the new eagle was just a juvenile Bald Eagle.
About the author: Naturalist, wildlife photographer, and writer Stan Tekiela is the author of more than 175 field guides, nature books, children’s books, wildlife audio CDs, puzzles, and playing cards, presenting many species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, trees, wildflowers, and cacti in the United States. With a Bachelor of Science degree in Natural History from the University of Minnesota and as an active professional naturalist for more than 25 years, Stan studies and photographs wildlife throughout the United States and Canada. He has received various national and regional awards for his books and photographs.
Make sure to enter our Summer Giveaway for your chance to win Stan Tekiela’s brand-new book Bald Eagles: The Ultimate Raptors and a copy of the United States Constitution.
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Only one winner?! Drats. I would love to have that prize, but I’m probably not eligible. Oh, well. I can dream. But I can’t figure out how the heck a bird can be of ‘bad moral character? I’ve enjoyed the live cams that show a mated pair of magnificent bald eagles hatching eggs and raising their young–they can be really good parents from what I’ve seen. Guess I’ll have to read the book to learn the answer to that question.
Dear Annie: It is indeed a beautiful book. And you got to read it!