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RACINE COUNTY — A bald eagle was spotted on Feb. 8 in Franksville.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), bald eagles were once endangered but now have made a remarkable comeback in Wisconsin.

Dustin Chacon, a former Racine County Eye Hometown Hero and local to Racine County, was lucky enough to spot the eagle while driving. With him to witness the bald eagle perched in the tree was his son, Jace.

The sighting of the bird happened at 4 p.m., as they were headed to their haircut appointments.

Dustin was driving on Dunkelow Road in Franksville near the bridge with the railroad tracks when he noticed the bird, which serves as the emblem of the nation.

Chacon recalls telling his son, “I think that’s a bald eagle.”

Due to the time of the year and trees being without leaves, it was easy for the Chacon family to spot something large in the tree.

Video of the majestic bird taking off in flight. – Credit: Dustin Chacon
bald eagle sighting
Dustin and Jace Chacon, father and son, shared a rare moment yesterday spotting a bald eagle in Racine County. – Credit: Dustin Chacon

After pulling over, they were able to discover that it was, in fact, a bald eagle.

He was right and together, Dustin and Jace were able to experience this sighting together.

“Honestly, the pictures and video don’t do it justice. He was pretty big,” said Dustin.

bald eagle sighting
Still images from the video of takeoff info flight. – Still image captures: Loren Lamoreaux; Video Credit: Dustin Chacon
bald eagle sighting
Another view with a filter gives a vibrant blue sky. – Credit: Dustin Chacon

Bald Eagles make comeback despite troubles

Despite reports of eagles being shot in Caledonia and Franksville in 2022, and reports of deadly collisions on roadways, the eagle population is still seeing a strong presence in the state, including Southeastern Wisconsin.

“I was in disbelief, never seen one in person, and couldn’t believe there was one in this area,” said Dustin.

The DNR shares that because of the recovery of bald eagles, all Wisconsin counties now have documented active eagle nests. The recovery was possible through the national ban on the pesticide DDT, added protections under federal and state endangered species laws, river cleanups, citizen donations, and monitoring by DNR’s Natural Heritage Conservation staff and partners.

Source: Wisconsin DNR

To help protect bald eagles, and to help support the next conservation success the DNR encourages the purchase of bald eagle license plates. The DNR’s work with bald eagles is funded by license plate sales and through donations to the Endangered Resources Fund.

Learn more online about Eagles in Wisconsin.

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