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Harriet stars in children’s book

December 27, 2018
By CHUCK BALLARO ( , North Fort Myers Neighbor

With a new nesting season well under way, the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam has released its first children's book, "A Day with Harriet", with plans to do more in the future and perhaps even a movie.

Featuring the famous bald eagle matriarch, the book takes readers through an average day for Harriet around her nest on the Pritchett Farm off Bayshore Road in North Fort Myers.

Written by Ginnie McSpadden, co-creator of the SWFEC, and illustrated by Brittany Cobb, the book is suitable for children of any age.

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McSpadden said after watching the eagles for years, it was time to offer another way to learn about the birds' life cycle.

"We've been watching the eagles for the last seven seasons and we saw so many life lessons and so many things adults and children can take from this," McSpadden said. "We thought it was great way to connect children on another level by watching the eagle cam and have something in hand they can read all year long."

All of the content in the book was inspired from real life events and images pulled from the live camera's archive.

Readers will get to see Harriett fly high in the skies over Florida, fish in her favorite pond and much more. What they won't see is eagle dad M15 or her taking care of their little eaglets. That's for later.

McSpadden said this will be the first of what she hopes will be several books about Harriet and her family over the next few years and she has even bigger goals for the eagles.

"We're laying the groundwork for all the lessons we hope to teach through these books," McSpadden said. "We hope to incorporate M and the eaglets in future books, and maybe even do an animated movie."

McSpadden said there will also be items for purchase that go along with the book as another touchpoint for youths to get connected with nature.

She hopes schools, childcare centers, park agencies, and other institutions can use A Day with Harriet as a resource for creating lesson plans and activities centered on the live cams and connecting children with nature.

Additional content for hands-on learning such as a printable Harriet coloring page, kid-friendly craft and bald eagle quiz can be found on website,



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