Where eagles dare

There are so many bald eagles on Unalaska that ­every Christmas, the National Audubon Society enlists the local community to count the birds. A recent count found more than 800 on the island.

Local children are terrified of eagles because they dive-bomb them in the schoolyard. One teacher was attacked twice in one day and needed stitches to her head. Students are taught to wave a stick over their head or hit the ground if an eagle hovers.

Last summer US Fish & Wildlife Service biologists visited to see if anything could be done to prevent the attacks. But as eagles are protected under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald & Golden Eagle Protection Act, no one can distrurb them without a permit, even in self-defence.

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