There is no single cause for the decline. Many were shot by farmers,ranchers,and others. Many also died from lead poisoning. DDT made thin egg shells and the egg would often be crushed. Birds of prey wound up with large amounts of poison in their system. DDT killed many eagles and other animals. DDT was band in 1972. It may take hundreds of years for the affects of DDT to go away. Even with most of the bad pesticides gone animals are still poisoned. A female lays her eggs a few days apart and this might be bad for the bald eagle. The oldest gets first choice of food. The youngest will most likely die of hunger. This is naturess way of controlling the population. DDT stands for Dichloro-Diphenly-Trichoroenthane. Few babies that live may be bad for the bald eagle. Sometimes the egg shell was hard, but when the babies hatched they were infertile or could not have babies because of DDT. There still is hope for full recovery of the bald eagle.