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Eagle Shootings

dead eagles

Summary of Events:

On December 28, 2007, South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks, Wildlife Conservation Officer Joe Galbraith found a wounded adult golden eagle. The bird was located four miles north and two miles west of Ipswich, South Dakota. The bird was believed to have been shot sometime between December 25th and December 27th, 2007. The eagle was transported to the Bramble Park Zoo in Watertown, South Dakota, where it was determined the bird had been shot. The bird is partially blind and is not releasable. The eagle is being housed at the Bramble Park Zoo.

On December 1, 2008, South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Wildlife Conservation Officer Nick Cochran recovered an injured immature bald eagle, two miles north and two and one half miles west of Tulare, South Dakota. The eagle was transported to the Bramble Park Zoo in Watertown, South Dakota, where it was determined the eagle had been shot. On December 3, 2008, the eagle died while the veterinarian was performing surgery to repair a broken leg.

On December 27, 2008, an injured golden eagle was found north and west of Carpenter, South Dakota. The bird was found on 413th Ave, between 183rd and 185th Street. The bird was transported to the Bramble Park Zoo in Watertown, South Dakota, where it was determined the bird had been shot. Due to the extent of its injuries, the bird had to be euthanized.

On March 26, 2009, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Wildlife Conservation Officer (CO) Tim McCurdy was contacted by an individual who reported finding a dead eagle in Beadle County, South Dakota. The eagle was found on 193rd Street, 1.5 miles east of Hwy 37. The eagle was X-rayed at the Lake Area Vet Clinic where it was determined the immature bald eagle had been shot.

On April 11, 2009, an immature bald eagle was shot in Roberts County, South Dakota, about one mile south of the North Dakota line, on the West side of Highway 127. The bird had to be euthanized due to the extent of its injuries.

On May 22, 2009, South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Wildlife Conservation Officer Evan Meyer recovered a dead immature bald eagle, south and east of Virgil, in Beadle County, South Dakota, near the intersection of 393rd Ave and 216th Street.

Sometime prior to December 24, 2010 a golden eagle was shot in Sanborn County, one mile north of Forestburg, South Dakota.

Additional Information:
Eagles follow the snow goose migration and are in South Dakota in large numbers until the snow geese leave the area. If you come across a dead eagle, please do not touch the bird, rather, contact your local Wildlife Conservation Officer or your local Sheriff's department.

All eagles (including bald eagles and golden eagles) are protected by both federal and state law. Eagles are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act.

Callers with information may remain anonymous. An individual who provides information which leads to a conviction is eligible for a reward. If you have information about these, or any other federally protected species, please contact:

Special Agent Ken Dulik, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 605.885.6403 or

SDGF&P TIPS Hotline - 1-888 OVERBAG