The corpse of a second second Bald Eagle was found shot and killed on 24 January near Patterson, Wayne County
The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act prohibits the “take, possession, sale, purchase, barter, offer to sell, purchase or barter, transport, export or import, of any bald or golden eagle, alive or dead, including any part, nest, or egg, unless allowed by permit,” according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. “Take” includes pursuing, shooting, shooting at, poisoning, wounding, killing, capturing, trapping, molesting, disturbing, or collecting the animal.
A Bald Eagle surveys the countryside from its nest near Lawrence, Kan., on April 4, 2015. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
“The 1972 amendments increased civil penalties for violating provisions of the Act to a maximum fine of $5,000 or one year imprisonment with $10,000 or not more than two years in prison for a second conviction. Felony convictions carry a maximum fine of $250,000 or two years of imprisonment. The fine doubles for an organization,” according to the Service.
A second juvenile Bald Eagle found shot to death on 29 January by Conservation Agent Eric Long in Reynolds County, Southeast Missouri
Here is what a number of local Missouri residents had to say about the eagle killings.
“They’re a symbol of our nation and they should be protected and kept sacred,” local man Tom Clemons said.
“I think it’s a shame, it’s our national bird and they’re beautiful. They’re pretty to look at and I think people ought to just leave them alone,” local Jean Leise said.
One of our nation’s most majestic symbols, like the flag, the eagle, to many, represents freedom. That’s why people in Ellington aren’t too happy to hear about the bird found shot to death just outside of town.
“I think it’s a travesty. It should be corrected,” Clemons said.
Conservation Agent Eric Long found one of the eagles on Friday, January 29.
“It’s America’s bird, whether they knew that or not. It’s a senseless thing. It’s kind of a heartfelt to find it out in the field,” Long said.
Long said we are seeing more eagles in this area in recent years, but still they’re federally protected along with any other bird of prey.
“Regardless it doesn’t matter if it was a turkey vulture or an eagle, you can’t shoot them, they’re protected,” Long said.
The other eagle was found was found in Wayne County on January 24. Both were young birds that hadn’t yet developed they’re white heads. They were part of a rare and beautiful family.
“I wouldn’t say they’re common by any means, a handful of them throughout the county,” Long said.
“Every once in a while we see one across the road and watch it fly around,” Leise said.
Many people say they hope to be able to see eagles for years to come.
“It represents what our nation stands for beauty, freedom, they ought to be left to be free,” Leise said.
This crime is punishable by an up to $250,000 fine and/or possible jail time.