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For Immediate Release, May 21, 2009

Contact: Peter Galvin, Center for Biological Diversity, (707) 986-2600

Stephen Colbert, Jr., World's Most Famous Bald Eagle,
Debuts on Free Endangered Species Ringtone Site  

Never-before-released Audio Available for Download to Cell Phones

TUCSON, Ariz.— Today the Center for Biological Diversity added the cry of Stephen Colbert, Jr. to its free, educational endangered species ringtone site www.RareEarthtones.org. Joining the polar bear, beluga whale, gray wolf, and a host of other endangered species, the call of the eagle made famous by Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert can now be freely downloaded as a cell-phone ringtone.

“We’re honored to be able to bring the sound of the world’s most famous bald eagle to the public for the first time in history,” said Peter Galvin, conservation director at the Center. “He’s an excellent endangered species ambassador. Our gallery of photos has more images of Stephen Colbert, Jr. than anywhere else in the world. Not only is this his global audio debut, it’s also the finest collection of Colbert, Jr. photos ever assembled.”

On April 17, 2006, a bald eagle was hatched as part of the San Francisco Zoo’s Bald Eagle Recovery Program. Stephen Colbert, host of the popular Colbert Report, featured footage of the newborn chick on his show and claimed it as his own son, Stephen Colbert, Jr. Since then, he has been keeping on-air track of the eagle’s personal development, making Colbert, Jr., the most famous bald eagle in the world.

After release from the San Francisco Zoo when he was less than two months old, Colbert, Jr. grew up hunting on Santa Cruz Island, California, equipped with nothing but a blue tag, a GPS unit, and his wits. He has since traveled throughout the West Coast, from California to Canada. Colbert Sr. complained bitterly of his son’s visit to Canada, which the broadcaster described as a bastion of Vietnam draft-dodgers and terrorist pigeons.

The day before Christmas 2008, Colbert, Jr. was sighted and photographed at the Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge of northeastern California and southern Oregon. Photographs from that sighting can be downloaded as cell-phone wallpaper along with the Colbert, Jr. ringtone on www.RareEarthtones.org.

RareEarthTones.org also features the croaks, cries, howls, and songs of nearly 100 other species, the most popular being the Mexican wolf, orca, barred owl, common loon, and bobcat. More than 290,000 ringtones have so far been downloaded by countries across the globe, with the United States, United Kingdom, China, Iran, and Poland ranking as the top five downloading nations.

The Colbert, Jr. audio recording featured as a ringtone on the site is the world’s only known recording of the celebrity raptor’s voice, which most say is at least as distinctive as that of his father, Colbert, Sr. Many listeners even detect a note of sarcasm — or at least irony — in Colbert, Jr.’s high-pitched cry.

Download a ringtone of Colbert, Jr.’s voice for yourself on www.RareEarthtones.org.

Track Colbert, Jr.’s travels using the Institute for Wildlife Studies’ bald eagle tracking portlet.

Learn more about bald eagles from the Center for Biological Diversity.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national nonprofit conservation organization with 220,000 members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

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