Eagle Capital of Texas Hosts 24th Annual Rains County Eagle Fest
The Eagle Fest is a fascinating indoor/outdoor, one-day event that spreads awareness and celebrates the “Eagle Capital of Texas,” and on Saturday, January 19, 2019 the cool air did not stop Eagle Watchers from filling buses and touring the lakes around Emory. Eagle Fest was still a great success, even though the high winds left passengers on shore. The Festival is held in Emory, Texas at the Rains County Elementary School. The day’s schedule of events included eagle sighting bus tours to and from Lake Fork and Lake Tawakoni. Lake Fork Barge Tours were planned, but due to high winds, they were canceled.
What if you did not want to brave the cold and take a tour?
Eagle lovers could brave the cold to catch a glimpse of an Eagle, or they could have stayed at the school. The day was jammed-packed with different programs.
The Blackland Prairie Raptors educated spectators about the importance of birds of prey and gave us an up close and personal view of many different birds. What are raptors? A Raptor is a bird (such as an eagle or hawk) that kills and eats other animals for food. There are many different kinds of raptors, but the birds of prey they showed us were American kestrel, Peregrine Falcons, Mississippi kite, screech owls, barn owl, and a red tail hawk. Here are a few fun facts about some of these birds: Falcons can eat big fowl, which includes ducks; the Mississippi Kite can eat while in flight, and the screech owl is not nocturnal, while the barn owl is.
What are the characteristics of a Raptor?
The first characteristic in a raptor you might identify is that they catch their prey with their talons or claws. This is important because vultures are considered raptors, but might be removed because they do not catch their prey. The second distinction would be their beaks, which are hooked, and lastly, keen eyesight. In fact, a Red Tail Hawk will fix its eyes on its prey and will swoop down and never look away, even if it means getting hit by a car.
Why is the Eagle Fest held in Emory, Texas?
On the 16th of June 1995, then-Governor George W. Bush made it official that Rains County was the “The Eagle Capital of Texas.” The County became “The Eagle Capital” in an effort to protect and preserve the American Bald Eagles in that area. This would be the reason photographers and birdwatchers have been lined up off of Farm to Market 47 by the Tawakoni Dam in Van Zandt County. They have been searching and hoping for a look or hoping for an awesome photo of an American Bald Eagle since the first week in January.
If you had the chance to dance, would you?
The Mitotiliztli Yaoyollohtli Dance Company wore distinctive clothing and head pieces that made their performance very powerful. They asked the crowd for volunteers to join them in the dance circle as they taught us Danza steps. “When you get the chance to sit it out or dance,” you dance.