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Subject:   Bald and Beautiful: Eagles Flock to the Skagit
For Immediate Release:   
1/28/2003  12:00:00 AM
For More Information Contact:

Seattle City Light's Skagit Hydroelectric project produces clean energy and contributes to healthy salmon populations in the Skagit River. Recently the location of the biggest run of spawning chum salmon since record keeping began in 1913, the area now hosts large number of bald eagles, who feed on the salmon carcasses. An estimated one-third of all wild salmon in Puget Sound come from the Skagit, the second largest river in the state.

Blad Eagle Painting

The upper Skagit is home to the largest winter population of bald eagles in the continental United States. Learn more about them at the 2003 Upper Skagit Bald Eagle Festival, Saturday, February 1, and Sunday, February 2, in Concrete, WA. A whole weekend of activities is planned with many free events, including bus tours to view the eagles. Seattle City Light and Puget Sound Energy also offer teachers free professional clock hours for pre-registering and attending the festival, site visits and workshops. Call (206) 684-3026 to register.

"We are proud to be a sponsor of this year's Bald Eagle Festival," says City Light Superintendent, Gary Zarker. "It is rewarding to see the eagles returning in large numbers, a sign that we're making a positive contribution to the environment."

For more than two decades Seattle City Light has operated its Skagit hydroelectricity project, which generates a quarter of Seattle's electricity, in a way that puts the needs of salmon first and power production second. This has resulted in the most productive stocks of chinook, pink and chum salmon in the Puget Sound region.

Spawning grounds for Skagit salmon are located downstream of the dams, and if water flows are not carefully managed, salmon may be harmed by de-watering salmon eggs downstream or stranding juvenile salmon on gravel bars. Seattle City Light has been regulating river flows from the Skagit Project to protect salmon since 1981.

For additional festival information and a complete schedule, please see: http://www.skagiteagle.org/festival_events.html or call 360-853-7283.

 

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