50th Anniversary of the Endangered Species Act at Radnor Lake State Natural Area

On December 28th, we will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). This historic law was signed in 1973 and is considered one of the world’s most important conservation laws.

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) provides legal protection to plants and animals that are defined as threatened (likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future) or endangered (in danger of extinction). It has helped to save countless species from extinction over the past 50 years. Species like the American bald eagle, American alligator, whooping crane, and Okaloosa darter owe their continued existence this vital law.

As we approach December 28, the official anniversary date, you can celebrate this important milestone in many ways and continue to support the conservation of our planet’s precious wildlife. Species recovery and conservation take strong partnerships and communities willing to lend a hand (Source: US Fish & Wildlife Service).

Here are three opportunities at Radnor Lake State Park & State Natural Area you can participate in to celebrate this historic event:

1. On December 27 (10am-1pm) hike up to the Barbara J. Mapp Aviary Education Center to see the work to care for injured birds of prey that are non-releasable into the wild with species such as our 4 captive American bald eagles protected and often associated with this historic legislation. Visitors can join SIR Mackenzie Maness and/or one of our state park rangers to enjoy a glove program during this 3-hour window and special open house event. To learn more about that opportunity, please visit the following link:


2. On December 28th at 7am, join State Park Ranger Brandon Jarratt and Park Manager Steve Ward for quick PowerPoint overview of this historic occasion then for a easy-moderate hike to the Lake Trail Observation Deck to view our nesting bald eagles and our third nest at the natural area thru one of our spotting scopes. To learn more about and register for this event, please visit the following link:


3. On December 28th at 2pm-5pm, we will be conducting an afternoon eagle spotting scope program to highlight our American bald eagles working on their nest on the point of the lake. Then hike with Director of Tennessee State Natural Areas, Roger McCoy thru our native grasslands in the historic Hall Farm to highlight the conservation work being done in partnership with Friends of Radnor Lake, Iris Fund License Plate monies, Tennessee Division of State Natural Areas and Tennessee State Parks to create and enhance native grasslands for ground nesting birds species and pollinators such as Monarch Butterflies including our land acquisition plan to protect these habitats for future generations. To learn more about and to register for this hike, please visit the following link: