Eagles and taxes — two important things are happening right now in the Department of Natural Resources non-game wildlife division.
There is the very popular eagle cam, the live video feed from a nest in Ramsey County. It’s up and running. (dnr.state.mn.us)
And there is your state income tax filing.
There is a checkoff box on the tax form (look for the loon) that you can use to make a contribution to the program. Eighty percent of its funding comes via the checkoff. The annual total is about $800,000.
How popular can a non-game program be? When the eagle cam first went live six years ago, the first two hours brought viewers from all 50 states and 180 different countries.
The eagle cam has boosted contributions by about $50,000 a year, according to Lori Naumann, promotions and permits officer for the DNR. (She monitors the camera.)
The checkoff supports much more than the eagle show. Projects include Lights Out Twin Cities (protection for migrating birds), Important Bird Area program, colonial waterbird survey, trumpeter swan restoration programs, loon monitoring, loon watcher survey, and the bald eagle survey.
Check the box on Form M1, individual income tax (line 22, page 2) or Form M1PR, homestead credit refund (for homeowners) and renter’s property tax refund. Or, ask your tax preparer to do it for you.