This weekend, my husband and I went to the National Eagle Center to see if we could spot some of the bald eagles which are currently migrating to the area. Last year there were 100 nesting pairs counted. A number of years ago there was only one pair so they are definitely making a comeback. We saw about 20 eagles.
Wabasha, Minnesota is the site for the largest concentration of eagles in the lower 48 states. Now, I don't know about you but when I think about eagles, I don't think Minnesota. I think about eagles soaring around high mountains with their nests perched high above the ground. Minnesota does not have mountains. Well, I guess there is one mountain which is about 2,000 feet high but there are no mountain ranges. There are bluffs but that it all.
And yet, here are some bald eagles nesting near the Mississippi River.
So why Wabasha? That's a good question. A lot of people asked that question while I was at the National Eagle Center. I found the answer rather interesting. You see, Wabasha is at the south end of Lake Pepin. As the Mississippi River is joined by it's first major tributaries, the Minnesota and the St. Croix Rivers, it widens and forms a natural lake which is known as Lake Pepin. Then it narrows again and continues it's journey down to New Orleans in Louisiana. At the point where the river narrows again, the current picks up. Due to the speed of the current, this particular stretch of water does not freeze over in the winter time. Occasionally it may get a thin sheet of ice for about a week but over all, this is a stretch of open water year around, even if the temperature does dip down to -20 F.
So, what does this mean for eagles? Well, their primary food source is fish so the open water enables them to be able to fish all winter long. In other words, this is the best place to get fresh water and food. The irony of these eagles being able to feast in the dead of a Minnesota winter astonishes me. As I thought about it, I could not help but find it interesting that God had prepared the perfect place for those eagles to winter, year after year after year.
As I thought about how God provided for these eagles, how much more so will He provide for our needs as well. We just need to trust Him and listen to what God says rather than what people say.
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26