Bald eagles make a surprising comback in California!
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
7/21/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
For the first time in more than 50 years, a nesting pair of bald eagles have been found on San Clemente Island, officials reported on July 17.
Bald eagles, which had disappeared from the Channel Islands in the 1960s, have made a comeback following a re-population effort started in 2002.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This discovery means that bald eagles have re-established territories on five of the eight islands in the chain, and experts expect the eagles to return to all eight islands within just a few years.
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Bald eagles vanished from the islands in the 1960s primarily because of the use of the insecticide DDT which caused the eagle's eggshells to thin and break easily.
More than 60 birds live on the islands and 16 breeding pairs were added to the population in order to jump start re population as part of a reestablishment effort that began in 2002. As part of this effort, 61 chicks were released into the northern Channel Islands.
There weren't any chicks in the nest on San Clemente, but Jane Hendron, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said that it's encouraging to know that eagles now occupy most of the islands.
After four years of breeding the eagles in captivity, the first chick hatched naturally on Santa Cruz Island for the first time in more than 50 years. Due to this, Hendron said that they are no longer breeding eagles in captivity now that there are natural eagle hatchings.
"We're just going to let nature take its course," she said.
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