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  • Bald Eagle populations began to rebound after the pesticide DDT was banned in the United States in 1972.
  • Grizzly bears in the Yellowstone National Park area may soon be taken off the threatened list.
  • The Nature Conservancy helped initiate a successful captive breeding program that has helped the Santa Cruz Island fox population rebound.
  • The Cuyahoga River Valley and Lake Erie were once devoid of most aquatic life, but have been brought back to health thanks in part to the Clean Water Act.
  • Large swaths of the eastern United States are more forested today than they were in the 1800s, thanks to the Weeks Act, conservation easements and sustainable forestry.
  • In 1974, the Mauritius kestrel was considered the rarest bird in the world – there were just four of them!
  • The Endangered Species Act has been crucial in helping protect large predators like the gray wolf in the United States.
  • The International Whaling Commission’s moratorium on commercial whaling may have saved gray whales from extinction.
  • The passage of the Clean Air Act in 1970 established air quality as an issue of public and environmental health in the United States.
  • Near the verge of extinction in the 1800s, the southern white rhino is now considered the most abundant rhino in the world.
  • The Next Comebacks: China’s Yunnan golden monkey is one of the world’s most endangered primates, and the Conservancy and local partners are looking for ways to save it.

  • The Next Comebacks: Much floodplain land in the United States has been lost to farming or development, but reconnecting floodplains can be an effective and low-cost way to reduce flooding.

  • The Next Comebacks: Salmon are critical to the entire Pacific Coast ecosystem. The Conservancy is involved in more than 50 restoration projects across five states and Canada.
Nature's Greatest Comebacks
The top 10 comebacks of the past and the recoveries that Conservancy scientists predict that we'll be celebrating in the future.

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