CAMP RIPLEY -- Wildlife crews at Camp Ripley recently released a golden eagle back into the wild.

The release, which took place last Friday, was part of the Minnesota National Guard conservation program.

The program collects data about the migration and habitat use of golden eagles as well as frequency of travel for each bird.

Brian Dirks is the animal survey coordinator on Camp Ripley. He says it was believed golden eagles were not a regular winter resident in central Minnesota, until the eagles were spotted on trail cameras meant to monitor wolves.

The eagle known as "Victor" was set free with a small GPS transmitter to continue to monitor the birds behavior.

This is the second golden eagle capture and released on Camp Ripley in the past three years.

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