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Conservation center begins 2014 eagle count

Monday - 3/17/2014, 2:55pm  ET

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) -- The Center for Conservation Biology has started its annual count of nesting bald eagles in Virginia.

A three-man team uses an airplane to fly over eagle habitat to look into nests and count breeding birds.

The center says this year's flights so far have revealed a concentration of early breeders between Jamestown and Smithfield.

The bald eagle has made a significant comeback in Virginia since the late 1970s, when there were about 30 bald eagle nests scattered throughout the state's Tidewater region. In 2013, the center logged 200 nests along the James River alone.

The Center for Conservation Biology is a program operated jointly by the College of William & Mary and Virginia Commonwealth University.

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