The national bird has made a comeback in the last few decades, after being on the verge of extinction from vast DDT poisoning in the ‘60s and ‘70s that thinned their eggshells and crashed their birth rate, destruction of their habitats with the growth of the country, contamination of waterways and food sources, and shootings by ranchers trying to protect their sheep. ... In 1997, they were down-listed from the federally endangered species list. Endangered species are those that are in danger of extinction throughout all of its range. Threatened species are likely to become endangered in the near future.
According to Environmental Defense, a New York-based conservation group, there are more than 7,678 nesting pairs of bald eagles in the contiguous 48 states. In 1963, there were 417 pairs. ...
Still, it will need special protection and will be safeguarded under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the federal Bald Eagle Protection Act of 1940 that prohibits killing or selling eagles. No one can “take, transport, sale, barter, trade, import and export.” Possession is illegal without a permit. This includes eagle parts, nests, and eggs. Possession of a feather or other body part is a felony with a fine of up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment. ...
Only a few species have “fought their way back from the United States’ endangered species list.” They include the California gray whale, the American alligator,
and the bald eagle.