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Keeping Tabs On Bald Eagles By Looking At The Little Ones

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A study is underway in parts of Minnesota and Wisconsin to monitor the health of bald eagles.

On Tuesday, WCCO’s cameras got to tag along as a crew brought a single eagle chick down from its nest. (Watch the video above.)

Researchers usually take a blood sample to check for chemicals, but this chick was too young for a needle stick.

“We were looking for birds that were between 5 and 9 weeks old, and this nestling was about 4 and-a-half weeks old, so it was a little young for our sampling,” said Bill Route of the National Park Service.

Biologists say that by monitoring contaminants in bald eagles, we’re able to get a view into what kind of contaminants humans might be exposed to.

In the coming weeks, researchers will visit nests along the Mississippi and St. Croix rivers.

They’ll also work the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior.

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