Louisville Zoo celebrates first-ever hatchings of baby Steller's - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Louisville Zoo celebrates first-ever hatchings of baby Steller's sea-eagles in Zoo's 48-year history

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- There are new mouths to feed at the Louisville Zoo -- or new beaks, actually. 

The Zoo is celebrating the first-ever hatchings of baby Steller's sea-eagles in the institution's 48-year-history, according to a news release. The eaglets can view viewed daily on a nest cam at the Zoo's Glacial Run exhibit.

"These two hatchings are significant to the Species Survival Plan as a whole, bringing the total of Steller's sea-eagle managed population to 19," Louisville Zoo Director John Walczak said in a statement. "The Louisville Zoo is only the third accredited Zoo to successfully breed Steller's sea-eagles. With only 5,000 of these stunning eagles in the remnant wild and a declining population that is listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened species as Vulnerable to extinction, these hatchlings will help raise awareness of this magnificent species."

The first eaglet hatched on April 4 and the second on April 7.

"Our community can celebrate with us in watching a rare and memorable event," said Gary Michael, bird curator at the Louisville Zoo. "The species is seldom bred in a managed system and a reliable strategy to do so is needed to assure the declining species is conserved. At the current rate of deforestation in Russia's tall-growth forests, the sea-eagle's status is likely to be uplisted to Endangered in the years to come."

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