Outreach Public Affairs Manager Alex Wehrung was recently interviewed by Washington Post reporter Dana Hedgpeth on lead toxicosis in Bald Eagles, and how analyzing patient admissions at the Wildlife Center of Virginia can give insight into broader environmental and conservation issues.
Describing why an increasing number of Bald Eagles are being admitted with traceable levels of lead toxicosis, Wehrung shared, “As populations grow, the suitable habitat for eagles near rivers is becoming more rare, so they’re moving inland, and their diet is changing from being a majority of fish to a diet of scavenging and eating carcasses,” Wehrung said. “As a result, we’re seeing more cases of positive lead toxicity in their blood. A lead fragment even the size of a grain of rice is enough to kill an otherwise healthy bald eagle.”
Read the full article on The Washington Post's website.