By Brad Johnson, The Inter-Mountain
SHAVERS FORK, W.Va. — A bald eagle was released back into the wild in Randolph County Monday after being nursed back to health from lead poisoning, officials said.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources police officers, with the assistance Jo Santiago and Dylan Lewis with the U.S Forest Service International Programs, were able to successfully release a bald eagle that was found suffering from lead toxicity in Pocahontas County in January.
The adult eagle was treated and banded at the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia in Morgantown, and returned to the Upper Shavers Fork area of Randolph County for release on Monday.
Lead toxicity occurs when eagles ingest lead, most likely while scavenging carcasses of other wildlife, a DNR press release stated. When ingested, lead has detrimental effects on the nervous and reproductive systems of eagles. Eagles with lead poisoning may exhibit the loss of balance, gasping, tremors and impaired ability to fly. Emaciation follows and death can occur within two to three weeks after lead ingestion…