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Letter: Eagle deaths could be from lead bullets in carrion

Published December 29, 2013 5:20 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The recent news about the numerous cases of eagle deaths in your state prompted me to offer a possible answer to your question about why they are dying so rapidly ("4 bald eagles being treated as death toll hits 16," Tribune, Dec. 26).

We have a similar quandary here in the Pacific Northwest, but it is our condors who have been dying off. The problem is our hunters who use lead bullets to kill game. After the carcasses are left to the scavengers, the bullets remain in the flesh of the dead animals to be ingested in the scavengers. Our condors have been dying of lead poisoning!

Could it be that your eagles are also being similarly poisoned? Our solution is to ban lead bullets.

As a nature lover I am against the slaughter of wild creatures. Much damage has been caused by hunters that resulted in the extinction of entire species. My answer was to become vegetarian, and my excellent health at an advanced age is ample evidence that mankind is biologically a vegetarian animal and not a carnivore. I hope this message is a light on your paths.

Basil R. Tyler

Retired professor

University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Vancouver, Wash.