Ohio’s first eaglet of 2010 hatches in Huron County

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COLUMBUS — The first eaglet of 2010 has hatched in Huron County, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife.

The agency’s volunteer eagle watchers, who have been observing this nest (named the “Pontiac” nest) since incubation began in early February, reported at least one eaglet hatched on March 5.

It will be several weeks before they can determine the total number of eaglets in the nest.

The incubation period for bald eagle eggs is 35 days. Young eagles fledge 72 to 75 days after hatching and leave their home nesting territory by the time they are 18 to 20 weeks old.

Increasing population

Thirty-one years ago, there were only four nesting pairs of bald eagles in the state, mostly along the Lake Erie shore. In 2009, 197 eaglets were produced from 113 nests.

Management program

Ohio’s bald eagle management program is partially funded by donations to the Ohio income tax Checkoff fund for Wildlife Diversity & Endangered Species.

The program is also funded by the sale of Ohio bald eagle license plates.

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