Authorities Investigating Dead Bald Eagles That May Have Been Shot In MN
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the United States Fish And Wildlife Service are investigating the death of two bald eagles. WDIO reports that the eagles were found near Blackduck, Minnesota. The anonymous tip said the eagles were found dead in the Blackduck River which is just outside of town. Blackduck is located in Beltrami County not far from Red Lake.
Bringmethenews.com says that local DNR officer Demosthenes Regas received a tip about the eagles and discovered the dead bodies. Someone had called the NonGame Wildlife program to report the dead birds. After Regas's initial investigation, both eagles appeared to have suffered injuries consistent with being shot.
Bald Eagles and Golden Eagles are a protected species in the United States. It's a felony to disturb or disrupt them. It's also illegal to take their eggs, transport eagles alive or dead, take any part of them such as feathers and more. Basically, don't mess with a bald eagle, because there can be criminal penalties. You can be fined up to $100,000 for a first time offense and/ or jailed for one year. If you're an organization that disrupts eagles you can be fined $200,000. There is an exception as Native Americans are allowed to posses eagle feathers and parts, however they do need to have a permit for that. Eagle feathers are used for religious purposes.
Both the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service are asking for any tips on this potential crime. You can call the Turn In Poachers (TIP) hotline at 1-800-652-9093 and submit your anonymous tip.