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Bald Eagles Spotted After More Than 50 Years

Update Date: Jul 18, 2014 09:01 AM EDT

A pair of nesting bald eagles were spotted on San Clemente Island off the Southern California coast for the first time in more than 50 years, according to National Park Service. 

Bald eagles vanished from the Channel Islands in the early 1960s due to DDT poisoning and were once listed as endangered species. 

"This news is very gratifying," Peter Sharpe of the nonprofit Institute for Wildlife Studies said in a statement released by the park service, according to Reuters. "I expect to see bald eagles return to all eight of the Channel Islands within a few years, which will mark yet another milestone in their successful recovery."

The park service added that no chicks were seen in the San Clemente Island nest, which was established by two birds that came from two other islands in the chain.

The female eagle, dubbed A-32 was hatched in a news near Juneau Alaska, in 2014 and released to Santa Cruz Island later that year, Reuters reported. The male was hatched on Santa Cruz Island in 2004. 

According to the park service, there are 60 resident bald eagles in the Channel Islands National Park. 

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