Threats to California Condors
California condors are carrion eaters. When condors eat meat that has been tainted by lead they can get sick and possibly die. When game is shot with lead bullets it fragments into hundreds of pieces. When game or gut piles are left out in the field, condors and other wildlife can get to it, ingesting the lead fragments. Non-lead ammunition is available and provides as good or better performance when compared with lead bullets, will not fragment and is less toxic to humans, condors and other wildlife.
Micro trash consists of small bits of trash such as broken bottles, bottle tops, can tabs and other smaller broken down pieces of trash that can be ingested by Condors. The trash that is ingested cannot be digested and causes impaction in their gastrointenal tract causing the birds to die. The micro trash is taken to nests where the chicks are affected by it as well. If a chick consumes the microtrash, the chick will not be able to survive to fledge the nest.