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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
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March 28, 2014     The Catalina Islander
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March 28, 2014
 

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IWS Bald Eagle Restoration Program is thriving Millions Visit the one of the great conservation suc- Eagle Cams to Get a Bird's Eye View COURTESY OF THE CATALINA ISLAND CONSERVANCY Love is in the air on Catalina Island, with the bald eagles that had disappeared from the Island for more than two decades con- tinuing their successful recovery during this year's mating season. Two eaglets hatched in the Seal Rocks nest at the far eastern end of the Island on Sunday or Monday, continuing the legacy of the national icon's successful return to breeding on Catalina. At least four more of the eight pairs of these large birds of prey on the Island are preparing for the hatching of chicks, thanks to a 34-year recovery effort by the Catalina Island Conservancy and Institute for Wildlife Studies. To see two of the sets of par- ents, join the millions who have visited IWS' two eagle cams set up on the Island and streaming online. "Seeing the bald eagles soaring over Catalina's cliffs is another visible sign of the important part- nerships that help the Catalina Island Conservancy fulfill its mis- sion of protecting and restoring the Island's invaluable natural, cultural and recreational assets" said Ann M. Muscat, Ph.D., Conservancy president and CEO. "The restoration of the bald eagle population on Catalina Island is cess stories, and it demonstrates how much can be accomplished when we work together to maxi- mize our resources" After two decades without an eagle sighting on Catalina Island, the Conservancy initially fund- ed the Bald Eagle Restoration Program in 1980. As addition- al funding became available, the IWS took over the program and manages it today with the Conservancy's support. The IWS, with the help of the Conservancy, reintroduced the eagles to the California Channel Islands at Catalina after DDT poisoning had decimated the big birds. The pesticide was outlawed in 1972 but continued to be in the environment. It caused the eagles to lay eggs with weak shells that cracked under the adults' weight during incubation. Initially, biologists removed the eagles' eggs from the nests, incubated them elsewhere and then returned the chicks to the nests. As the DDT in environment abated, the eagles were able to incubate their own eggs. Based on past experience, Peter Sharpe, Ph.D., the IWS biolo- gist who oversees the Bald Eagle Restoration Program on Catalina, said the three remaining eagle pairs could produce additional eggs before the mating season ends. Last year, 11 eggs hatched, and nine eggs hatched the year before. "Catalina's bald eagles have reached a self-sustaining popula- tion," Sharpe said. "Some of the A Catalina Island eagle swoops down to catch a fish. Photo by Michele Kogler. Courtesy Catalina Island Conservancy. ones born on the Island stay on the Island or return when they're ready to breed. We have four new birds on the Island this year, so we are very optimistic about the future of eagles on Catalina Island." Biologists have documented some important new develop- ments among the eagles visible on the eagle cams. In the Two Harbors nest, viewers can see an egg laid in mid-February by K-82, a female eagle hatched in 1998 and fostered at another nest on the Island. Her mate is K-81, a male eagle hatched in 1998 at the San Francisco Zoo and brought to Catalina as part of the recovery. The pair produced two eggs, but one broke. In the West End nest, view- ers can see K-01, a male eagle also known as Superman, who was hatched in 2000 in the San Francisco Zoo and brought to Catalina. K-01 lost his original mate, Wray, around the end of last year. But he's been recently seen in the company of K-87, a much younger female. K-87 hatched in 2009 in the Two Harbors nest. She was the first chick to hatch naturally in that nest. Biologists have seen the pair copulating but no egg so far. About the Catalina Island Conservancy The Catalina Island Conservancy was formed in 1972 and is one of California's oldest land trusts. Its mission is to be a responsible steward of its lands through a balance of conservation, education and recreation. The Conservancy protects the magnif- icent natural and cultural heritage of Santa Catalina Island, steward- ing approximately 42,000 acres of land deeded to the Conservancy in 1975, 62 miles of rugged shoreline and more than 80 miles of trails. It operates the Airport in the Sky, Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden and two nature centers. Twenty miles from the mainland, the Island is home to more than 60 plant and animal species found nowhere else in the world. For additional information, visit www. catalinaconservancy.org. It's time for new energy and new ideas. I'm ready to put my background in human resources, financial planning and business development to work for the city. Please feel free to contact me via phone at 51o-9561 or at Cinde@J:rontier.com Paid for by Cinde MacOugan-Cassidy March 28 - April 3 Shows Nightly at 7:30pm Rated R Admission: Adult $15.00, Senior or Child $13.00 Matinee - Saturday & Wednesday 4:30pm Admission: Adult $10.00, Senior or Child $8.00 Every Tuesday $8.00 Admission WINGING IT IS NOTAN EMERGENCY P] AN Make sure VU; famiiy knows what to do during an emergencyi Who ,0 call. Where to meet. What ,o :a:Ck Visi read' '.goV/kids fat tips and information. Ready ..... THE CATALiNAisLANDER ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ Fridayl lVlarcl 2812014 ! 7