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Save bald eagles: get the lead out!

By Gary Bogue
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 at 5:34 am in Bald Eagles, California condors, Lead bullets.

Bald eagle (Brian Murphy/Walnut Creek, CA)
bald3

The information below is from “Endangered earth Online,” the weekly e-newsletter of the center for Biological Diversity. Please read it. It’s very important … especially to bald and golden eagles, California condors and other birds of prey and wild bird and mammal scavengers … and yes, humans, too. Lead poisoning is nasty business. especially lead poisoning that we humans have the power to end immediately … if we want to. Thanks for caring. /Gary

Bald eagle (Brian Murphy/Walnut Creek, CA)
bald1

Endangered earth Online, July 29, 2010
A recent article in Alberta, Canada’s Edmonton Journal offers an inside look into what it takes to save a bird of prey from deadly lead poisoning — and makes all the more clear the urgency of preventing wildlife lead poisoning in the first place. “For the Sake of Eagles, It’s Time to Get the Lead Out” details exactly what bald eagles go through when they ingest toxic lead from scavenging lead-shot carcasses or ingesting lead-containing trash: Toxins collect in a bird’s fat reserves, and when the animal must expend energy — like during migration — the lead circulates in the blood and makes the bird very ill. At Edmonton’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Society, it takes several staff members to treat lead-poisoned birds with chelation therapy, which involves injecting them with penicillin and a calcium compound to draw the toxic mineral from their systems.

As the article says, people can help prevent lead poisoning in wildlife by not hunting with lead bullets — which in Alberta are illegal, as they should be. Unfortunately, lead bullets are still allowed in most of the United States — shot into the environment to the tune of 83,000 tons each year, including into the outside-California range of the severely lead-threatened California condor.

The Center for Biological Diversity is pushing harder than ever to stop all lead bullet use everywhere for the sake of eagles, condors, other wildlife and human health as well. Learn more about our Get the Lead Out campaign: http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/campaigns/get_the_lead_out/index.html

Then read more about poisoned eagles in the Edmonton Journal: http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/center/articles/2010/edmonton-journal-07-06-2010.html

Learn more about the Center for Biological Diversity at: http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/

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