Bald eagles hatching on Catalina Island

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Updated: 3/25/2014 1:45 pm

AVALON, Calif. (AP) — Bald eagles are hatching on Santa Catalina Island and a top biologist says it's another sign the population once threatened by chemical discharges is making a comeback.

The Orange County Register reported Monday that two eagles hatched over the past few weeks and a third is expected to claw out of its egg any time.

Peter Sharpe, a wildlife ecologist who oversees the bald eagle restoration program on Catalina, says DDT levels have lowered to the point that eggshells are thick enough to sustain life.

Bald eagle populations were decimated in the 1970s when millions of pounds of the pesticide was released from a Torrance plant into coastal waters.

DDT weakened eggshells, causing them to crack prematurely.

Currently Catalina has eight pairs of eagles, seven of which have active nests.

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