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article imageHuman interaction killing eagles on Vancouver island

By Karen Graham     Mar 11, 2016 in World
Three bald eagles have been killed in interactions with humans in under a week on Vancouver Island, and veterinarians are very concerned that these birds of prey are being targeted on purpose.
The Duncan Raptor Rescue Center is saying all three eagles had to be euthanized after one was found to be shot, another was the victim of lead poisoning and the third had struck a power line. The deaths have sparked concerns that someone is deliberately trying to kill the birds.
"They didn’t stand a chance,” veterinarian Dr. Ken Langelier told CTV News Canada. “If there were any chance that they could’ve been saved and released, we would have taken every step to do that. But when we know that they’re suffering … it’s better they be euthanized than slowly die of starvation.”
A fourth eagle was found wandering around on a highway near Nanaimo. It had also been shot and ended up going through four hours of surgery. The eagle is expected to live and will be returned to the wild said veterinarian Dr. Ken Langelier, who treated the bird.
Dr. Langelier told CTV there have been seven calls about injured eagles just in the past week. “What’s really concerning is that all of the eagles we are seeing were either maliciously hunted by a human or indirectly affected,” he said.
In Canada, bald eagles are a protected species, according to Castanet, and it is illegal to harm them. Killing one of these birds will result in a big fine and the suspension of the individual's hunting license. Conservation officers have been called in to investigate the incidents.
These latest killings of endangered or protected bird species come just weeks after a federal investigation in the United States into the killing of 13 bald eagles found on a farm in Maryland. In the U.S., the bald eagle is the national bird and is protected under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act of 1940, according to a Digital Journal story on the incident.
More about eagle deaths', Vancouver island, Veterinarians, shooting of eagles, maryland eagle deaths
 
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