We are perhaps the only island to be named an Eagle Sanctuary!
Our story is quite unique. Marco Island’s Developer, Deltona, established our entire island as an Eagle Sanctuary under the auspices of the Florida Audubon Society in 1964. Douglas Waitley outlines this and other bits of our environmental history in his book, “The Last Paradise: The Building of Marco Island”.
The Marco Eagle Sanctuary Foundation (MESF) was established when we had two active nests; sadly, a recent accident left us with one, making preservation of this habitat more urgent. Green space is quickly disappearing on our 4 by 6 mile island, so we must work quickly to “live up to” and re-establish our Eagle Sanctuary status!
The remaining active nest is located in the center of an 11.6 acre undeveloped Marco Eagle Sanctuary on Tigertail Ct. previously known as Tract K; is now leased by MESF and is owned by Collier County’s School Board and is not included in their 20 Year Plan for Schools, but it could be sold to developers if our lease in not kept intact. Although the eagles (nest #CO-029) are protected under State and Federal guidelines, many inappropriate land uses have been proposed, such as: “sludge” storage, baseball parks, a parking garage for nearby beaches and a solar panel farm. To date, these uses have been denied as the property is zoned for Residential Use, and the location of the eagle nest severely limits available building space.
With the successful recovery of the number of American Bald Eagles, disturbance guidelines have been altered since the 1995 upgrade from “endangered to threatened”. Marco Island’s last remaining pair needs your help!
Read about Marco Island’s remarkable story in the book “Last Paradise” and learn why it has been called America’s “Last Paradise”.
- Return our island to the Developer’s 1964 Vision
- Raise public awareness of the value of our eagles
- Re-declare the island an Eagle Sanctuary through advocation of an Eagle Protection Ordinance
- Plant native habitat to restore and protect nesting habitat, for the eagles and their prey
- Develop Educational Programs for the benefit of local students, residents and visitors