Photo taken 16/04/04 Lakeland Bird of Prey centre, Penrith,UK
The Bald Eagle was appointed the National symbol for the United States of America in 1782. Since then it has been shot, poisoned and suffered loss of habitat. Bald eagles have few natural enemies. But in general they need an environment of quiet isolation; tall, mature trees; and clean waters. Although primarily fish and carrion eaters, bald eagles and other raptors were seen as marauders that killed chickens, lambs, and other domestic livestock. As a consequence, large numbers were shot by farmers, ranchers, and others.
After the banning of DDT however and an improvement in their habitat the Bald Eagle has made an astonishing comeback from 450 pairs in 1960 to 4000 nesting pairs today.