Press Room

Nothing Ruins the Great Outdoors Like Lead Poisoning

Overturning a lead ban for wildlife refuges puts birds and people at risk.

WASHINGTON (March 2, 2017)—In response to Secretary Ryan Zinke’s move to overturn a ban on lead ammunition and fishing tackle in wildlife refuges, the National Audubon Society issued the following statement:

"Lead ammo kills birds long after being fired from a gun,” said Sarah Greenberger, Audubon’s VP of conservation. “Banning toxic ammunition and fishing tackle in wildlife refuges is necessary for their long term survival as well as our own safety. 

“If Secretary Zinke has concerns with the process through which the lead ban was implemented, Audubon will work with him on any new effort to protect birds and the places they need, using the best available science."

Discarded lead ammunition and fishing tackle stay in the environment long after use and pose a deadly threat to birds, wildlife and people. Scavengers like condors and vultures may ingest carrion contaminated by lead shot, which often results in lead poisoning and a painful death.

For years, Audubon has led the way to protect birds and people from lead poisoning in the environment. In 2013, Audubon California helped pass AB 711, a statewide ban that aims to completely phase out the use of lead ammunition statewide by 2019.

The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow, throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education and on-the-ground conservation. Audubon’s state programs, nature centers, chapters and partners have an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire and unite diverse communities in conservation action. Since 1905, Audubon’s vision has been a world in which people and wildlife thrive. Audubon is a nonprofit conservation organization. Learn more at www.audubon.org and @audubonsociety.

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Contact: media@audubon.org, (212) 979-3000.

 

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