NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New York City might have a unique new resident.
For the first time in years, Manhattan is hosting the national bird.
Jessica Turner is a gardener at Riverside Park.
“I looked up and sure enough, there was a bald eagle up in a tree about 20 feet above our heads,” she told CBS2’s Steve Overmyer.
She joined a crowd of people who spotted the unmistakable form.
“It was my first time seeing a bald eagle in New York City,” she said. “It was pretty spectacular. Yeah, it was great.”
Our Gardeners were downright giddy about seeing this Bald eagle near the woodland today pic.twitter.com/6s1P1UFMyC
— Riverside Park Conservancy (@RiversideParkNY) January 21, 2020
Eagles are partial to heavily wooded areas by the water.
“We’ve got it right here at Riverside Park,” said Dan Garodnick, CEO of the Riverside Park Conservancy. “We have great access to the Hudson River. We have these tall stately trees.”
Garodnick says they have spotted a bald eagle in the park three times in the last three weeks and two times in the last three days.
We know of 170 pairs of eagles in New York State. In fact, there’s a known nest a few miles up the Hudson River.
The eagle spotted at Riverside Park was most likely a transient eagle looking for food — or possibly looking to move to Manhattan.
“Like we all do when we’re apartment hunting, you have to check out the scene and see is this a place where I wanna be,” Turner said.
“River views, a great environment and it’s rent-free, so it’s like the best deal in Manhattan,” Garodnick said.
Once an eagle find a nesting area, they’ll maintain that for their entire 30-year lifespan. It’s enough to make birders giddy.
Bird watcher Sheryl Reich says the eagle needs to find a mate before building a nest, but at least he won’t have a broker’s fee.
The eagle was spotted again Thursday afternoon at Riverside Park near 110th Street.