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The Alaskan Town Where Bald Eagles Are as Common as Pigeons

The majestic bald eagle is the national bird of the United States, but most Americans are lucky to see one first-hand during their lifetimes. Unless they live in the town of Unalaska, Alaska, where bald eagles are as common as pigeons are in other human settlements. Unalaska is home to around 4,700 people who have to share their space with over 600 beautiful bald eagles. It looks and sounds like something out of a fairytale, but it turns out that sharing your home with territorial predators also has its downsides. For one thing, you’re more likely to get attacked by a bald eagle in Unalaska than anywhere else in the US, and locals constantly have to keep an eye out for the birds, especially when going near their nests. They apparently hate it when people get too close. Bald eagles usually nest high up in trees, but the problem is that Unalaska doesn’t have too many trees, so the birds build their nests on cliffs on the edge of town or in man-made structures, which makes them more accessible to nosy humans. It’s easy to get a little too close to an eagle nest without even knowing it, which is why local law enforcement puts up warning signs all through the nesting season – from early June to the end of the summer. But even so, Unalaska sees between six and ten cases in which people require medical attention after encounters with eagles. “We have these signs that we put up every year to remind people that there are nesting eagles in the area,” Deputy Police Chief Jennifer Shockley told Alaska Public Media. “They will do whatever it takes to protect their young, and that typically includes launching themselves at people and using their talons to lacerate their heads.”

Read More: Oddity Central

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