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Eagles in peril: Lead poses unseen danger to both birds and humans

Eagles in peril: Lead poses unseen danger to both birds and humans

Bald eagles have made a successful comeback since their numbers dwindled due to human pressures in the early 1900’s. However, the charismatic national bird is threatened once again, this time from a different human-driven cause: lead. The New York State Wildlife Health Program (WHP) worked with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) to gather information on the issue, discovering that, in over 300 bald eagles tested for lead over the last 22 years, 17% had lead levels high enough to cause death from lead poisoning. Overall, 83% had exposure to lead.

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