The wintertime waters of Beaver Lake are usual pretty quiet, but up above it’s a much different story.”25 years ago when I first saw them, I thought they were lost,” said Ranger Alan Bland, but the thousands of seagulls who show up on Beaver Lake every winter aren’t lost, they’re just hungry.”
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Lot of terns and seagulls that we have right now are from up north. The big water freezes up — even the rivers and ponds — and forces them down here,” Bland said.The seagulls stop at Beaver Lake, where an easy meal is waiting.”It really works out well because nine out of 10 years on Beaver, it gets cold enough that the threadfin shad — which is a small shiny shad — starts to die. Well, when the seagulls are down here, these shad are dying and (the seagulls) just scoop them up like crazy,” Bland said.Their stay only last so long, though. Bland said the seagulls will hang around through February or early March and then begin the trek back home.”If you want to see something unusual, or something you don’t expect to see in Northwest Arkansas, they are absolutely beautiful,” Bland said.