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The Bald Eagle in Oklahoma

What You Should Know

An increase in public awareness about the value of eagles and the strict penalties for killing eagles seems to have lessened persecution. Indiscriminate shootings still occur though, and bald eagles are found dead in Oklahoma each year.

The bald eagle is protected by a number of state and federal laws, each with stiff penalties. For example, the Eagle Protection Act, which protects bald and golden eagles, combined with the Criminal Fines Improvement Act of 1987, can cause violators to spend one year in jail or be fined $100,000 on a misdemeanor charge. A second consecutive violation is automatically considered a felony with two years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. It is illegal to pursue, harm, harass, take or attempt to take, possess, sell, purchase or transport either eagles, eagle pans or their eggs.

If you know of anyone committing such a violation, call Operation Game Thief at 1-800-522-8039, or contact the state game warden in your county. You should also call the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Law Enforcement Agent in your area: (918) 581-7469 or (405) 231-5251.

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