Channel Islands National Park To Celebrate Decade Of Bald Eagle Recovery

Channel Islands National Park will be celebrating the return of the bald eagle on May 19. NPS photo.

Since bald eagle recovery efforts began at Channel Islands National Park in 2002, the number of resident bald eagles in the park has grown to more than 30. On May 19 the park will celebrate this achievement with a day full of activities.

The event will offer visitors a chance to see a live bald eagle up close, meet wildlife biologists, and learn about the ecological significance of bald eagle restoration on the Channel Islands.

Throughout the day there will be hourly screenings of Return Flight: Restoring the Bald Eagle to the Channel Islands, a film selected for the 2012 Wild and Scenic Film Festival that is currently touring the United States. This film chronicles the story of the bald eagle's recovery from disappearance from the Channel Islands in the 1960s due to DDT contamination, overhunting, and egg collecting to today's growing population.

Activities for the entire family include a live bald eagle viewing from 1 p.m.-3 p.m., Native American storytelling with Chumash island descendent Julie Tumamait, arts and crafts, educational booths, and ranger talks broadcast live from remote Anacapa Island and at the visitor center marine life exhibit.

The free event is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 19 at the Channel Islands National Park Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitor Center at 1901 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura Harbor.

Bald eagle restoration efforts on the Channel Islands are funded by the MSRP, a multi-agency program funded by court settlements and dedicated to restoring natural resources harmed by DDTs and PCBs released into the environment. Partners in this restoration effort include Channel Islands National Park, the Institute for Wildlife Studies, The Nature Conservancy, and Ventura County Office of Education.