Saving Eagles by tracking them

<div class="meta image-caption"><div class="origin-logo origin-image none"><span>none</span></div><span class="caption-text">Photos of six-week-old Eaglets in Greenwich Township, New Jersey.  Members of New Jersey&#39;s Endangered Species Program recently banded the birds so they can be tracked.</span></div>
April 25, 2008 9:37:51 PM PDT
Zoologist Mick Valent says this is his favorite time of year. This year is extra special because of a set of 6 week old eaglets.

Valent is with the New Jersey DEP's endangered species program and each year he and co-workers must band and examine baby eagles that are not easy to get.

Valent climbed high to reach the nest located in Greenwich Township, Cumberland County.

Each bird is put in a bag and lowered to the ground while mom and dad watch from above.

A small hood is placed on the eaglets to keep them calm .

They are banded so they can be tracked and blood is taken to see if they've been exposed to toxins.

It was the pesticide DDT that nearly wiped the nation's bald eagle population decades ago.

Eagles are no longer on the Federal Endangered Species list, but they are on New Jersey's list. However, great strides have been made.

In 1984 New Jersey started a program to save the eagles with a single carefully managed nest.

The programs succcess is in no small part due to the work of volunteers and land owners where the eagles nests are located.

They make sure no one bothers them after zoologists and vets do their work.

Mick Valent returns the eaglets to their nest after banding them. He is so moved by the birds beauty that he snaps a few photos for his very own.


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