Charlie Todd is a great wildlife biologist, so it was wonderful to learn recently that he received the highest honor from the Maine Wildlife Society, an organization of fisheries and wildlife professionals.
I’m very familiar with Charlie’s work on restoring bald eagles in Maine, and I’m very appreciative of that work when I see, nearly every day, eagles fly by my house. Oftentimes they sit in a tree alongside the pond and stream beside my Mount Vernon home.
Here’s the announcement, provided by Emily McCabe of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
IFW Biologist Receives Highest Honor From the Maine Wildlife Society
AUGUSTA, Maine — Charlie Todd, IFW’s Endangered Species Coordinator who spearheaded the recovery of bald eagles in Maine, received the Maine Chapter of the Wildlife Society’s highest honor last week when he was presented with the Award of Professional Achievement.
The award is given to wildlife professionals who have a sustained record of exceptional contributions and career achievements… and who exemplify a level of excellence and productivity that has resulted in significant advances in knowledge or lasting benefits to wildlife conservation.
“Charlie’s career is remarkable in both achievement and length,” said IFW Commissioner Chandler Woodcock. “His impact in Maine and beyond is extremely noteworthy.”
Charlie’s accomplishments are well known, as for 30 years, he oversaw Maine’s bald eagle program. During that time, Maine’s eagle population rose from 41 nesting pairs in 1976 to over 750 nesting pairs in 2012.
Known as a hands-on biologist, “Charlie spent thousands of hours in small planes monitoring eagle nests and locating new territories. He reared eagle chicks and fostered them back into nests, banded scores of nestlings, provided eaglets to other states for re-introduction, and rescued and rehabilitated injured eagles for later release.”
Charlie is also known for his ability to get multiple groups with diverse interest together to work towards common goal. According the award, “Charlie worked tirelessly…protecting eagle nest sites. This required extensive collaboration and communication with hundreds of private landowners, industrial forest landowners, land trusts, and municipalities. His skill in working with landowners, coupled with an easy-going manner often helped defuse potentially tense interactions with landowners and industry personnel. Charlie’s diplomatic approach and technical expertise resulted in many collaborative projects with Native American tribes, universities, pulp and paper mills, state and federal agencies, and other conservation partners.”
In addition, Charlie was responsible for coordinating the state’s re-introduction and management of peregrine falcons. This included leading a hacking program for 15 years, surveying remote cliffs scattered across Maine, monitoring active nest sites, and working with landowners and state and federal agencies as peregrines took up residence on bridges, popular hiking trails, and in urban settings. Today, thanks to Charlie’s leadership, Maine is now home to about 25 nesting pairs of this once extirpated species.
“The Department is extremely fortunate to have such a dedicated biologist managing our most vulnerable species,” said Wildlife Division Director Judy Camuso. “Charlie embodies what many of us all hope to be some day.”