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Local Bald Eagles Off Endangered List

Nests in the northern and southern part of town part of resurgence of national bird in New Jersey

Brick's bald eagles are in good company.

The bald eagle's status was upgraded by the state last week from endangered to threatened for the non-breeding season, reflecting significant population improvements, according to a statement from the Department of Environmental Protection.

Officials at the DEP credit the discontinuation of DDT and other pesticides, DEP management, habitat protection and improved water quality with the resurgence of the national bird in the Garden State.

"The success of our threatened and endangered wildlife is an important indicator of the health of our overall environment," said DEP Commissioner Bob Martin in a statement. "We have many positive takeaways from this most recent update to the lists, but we are also reminded that much work still lies ahead of us."

According to the DEP, endangered species are those whose prospects for survival are in immediate danger due to one or several factors, such as loss or degradation of habitat, exploitation, predation, competition, disease or environmental degradation. A threatened species is one that could become endangered due to its small population size, restricted range and/or specialized habitat needs.

Brick Township is home to two eagle populations – one near the Tunes Brook Branch of Kettle Creek in the southern part of town, and another along the south shore of the Manasquan River in the northern part of town.

A reporter's look (through binculars) at the southern nest on Monday showed no eagles in a well-known congregating area, but local residents say the birds have been spotted frequently throughout the winter.

"He or she has visited our dock to hunt the little ducks," said John Zingis, a Brick resident, in an e-mail.

Last week's announcement also brought good signs for the state's osprey population. The status of the iconic sea bird species has likewise been upgraded to threatened from endangered.

lisa February 28, 2012 at 11:56 AM
i see the southern brick eagles almost every morning on my way to work either flying around or sitting on the cell phone tower
Mare February 28, 2012 at 01:02 PM
Who would have thought this would happen in the 80's? This really is great. Now we need to those bright blue birds back that were here in the early 60's. They weren't the Eastern Blue Birds, but another type, such a beautiful bright pastel blue.
Bricktown Lew February 28, 2012 at 03:33 PM
That is great news. Usually, mankind's influence eliminates species of animals. It's great to know that it's getting better...at least down here.
G. Wagner February 28, 2012 at 08:03 PM
Mare, I'm not certain of the difference between the Species that you are describing but I recall seeing a large number of Blue Birds with Bright pastel backs over at the Drum Point Complex about two Thanksgivings ago.....
Daniel Nee (Editor) February 29, 2012 at 05:48 AM
The good news is that it's not just here in the Shore or in the southern half of the state. The number of nesting pairs have increased all across the state.

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