Bald eagle dies in eastern Iowa from lead poisoning - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Bald eagle dies in eastern Iowa from lead poisoning

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For the second time in the past three months, a bald eagle in eastern Iowa has died from lead poisoning.

Terese Evans and her team with the Black Hawk Wildlife Rehabilitation Project worked for days to bring our nation's symbol back to health, but it wasn't enough. The eagle had more than 30 times the toxic amount of lead in its system.

Evans said, "Anything above 0.2 is considered toxic and this eagle's level was 6." 

The eagle was spotted acting "off" in Fayette County around Valentine's Day. 

Evans said, "It wasn't looking well."  She continued, "It had droopy wings, it would not fly when approached...dogs were even bothering it and it wouldn't fly away."

After a couple days of treatment, Evans said the eagle appeared to be doing better. 

Evans said, "By day two, she was standing up on her perch, she was keeping everything down and she was very feisty."

But sadly, the eagle took a turn for the worse and died on day ten.

Evans said, "It's heartbreaking to see one go down and knowing that this is preventable." 

Eagles often eat dead animals that hunters shoot.  Evans says if hunters stopped using lead bullets, deaths like this could be prevented. It's not just bald eagles, lead poisoning affects more than 50 other animals in the food chain. 

Bald eagles are commonly spotted throughout Iowa in the winter months as they migrate for food. 

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