Rescued eagle dies from lead poisoning - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Rescued eagle dies from lead poisoning

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Lead bullet are often what hunters use.

Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation says the problem is lead bullets sometimes get left in the dead animals they hit.

Eagles then eat the lead while feeding on the animal, which can cause them to die from lead poisoning. 

It only takes lead the size of a grain of rice to poison and kill an eagle. 

That's what happened to an eagle that was rescued near Charles City. A man found the eagle sitting on a low branch, starving and struggling to breath. 

The eagle died not long after it was taken to a Waterloo vet. 

"You see our nation's symbol come in so depleted and know that it could have been prevented. It just breaks your heart," Terese Evans with Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation says.

Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation asks hunters to use non-lead bullets to reduce the risk of another eagle dying.

I asked area hunters why they use lead bullets.

They say lead bullets are more accurate, cheaper and a lot easier to find. 

Hunters also say lead bullets are designed in a way they're not supposed to break or stay in the animals they hit. 

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