News Release

June 8, 2011

Reward Offered in Bald Eagle Poaching Case in Washington

Media Contacts:
Pepper Ballard, (240) 751-0232, pballard@humanesociety.org

The Humane Society of the United States and The Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust are offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for illegally killing a bald eagle in Kitsap County, Wash. The HSUS reward adds to an existing $1,000 reward from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Case: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service gives the following account: On April 29, the body of a bald eagle was discovered in Manchester State Park. The eagle was propped upright adjacent to the beach bluff and at the high tide mark. Resident bald eagle pairs have been documented in and around the park. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Forensics Laboratory is performing a necropsy to determine the cause of death.

"Killing a protected species is a serious crime," said Dan Paul, Washington state director for The HSUS. "The Humane Society of the United States thanks the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for working tirelessly to bring wildlife violators to justice."

Shooting an eagle is a violation of the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act as well as the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Penalties for violating the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act can include up to one year in jail and a $100,000 fine per individual or $200,000 per organization. Penalties for violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act include between six months and up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $250,000 per individual, depending on whether an individual is convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony.

Poaching:

* Wildlife officials estimate that for every wild animal killed legally - tens of millions of animals per year - another is killed illegally.

* Every year, thousands of poachers are arrested nationwide; however, it is estimated that only 1 percent to 5 percent of poached animals come to the attention of law enforcement.

* Poachers injure or kill wildlife anytime, anywhere and sometimes do so in particularly cruel ways. Wildlife officials report that poachers often commit other crimes as well.

* The HSUS and HSWLT work with state and federal wildlife agencies to offer rewards of $2,500 for information leading to arrest and conviction of suspected poachers.

The Investigators: Anyone with information about the eagle death should contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Office of Law Enforcement in Redmond, Washington, at 425-883-8122. Callers with information may remain anonymous.

The HSUS Media Contact: Pepper Ballard: 240-751-0232; pballard@humanesociety.org

The HSUS and HSWLT work to curb poaching across the country. Visit humanesociety.org/poaching for more information.

The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization - backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs.

Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty - On the Web at humanesociety.org.