Information and Technology Report 1999-0001



Lead poisoning of waterfowl is neither a new disease nor a subject without controversy. The use of lead shot for waterfowl hunting within the United States has been prohibited and efforts are underway to ban the use of lead fishing sinkers and prohibit the use of lead shot for nonwaterfowl hunting. The first documented reports within the United States of lead-poisoned waterfowl were from Texas in 1874. Numerous other reports and studies added to those findings during the years and decades that followed. However, strong opposition to nontoxic shot requirements prevented full implementation of them until 1991. A full transition to nontoxic shot shells for all hunting and to nontoxic fishing sinkers and jig heads for fishing within the United States will not happen easily. The continued use of lead shot and lead fishing weights and the large amounts of these materials previously deposited in environments where birds feed assure that lead poisoning will remain a common bird disease for some time.

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype Federal Government Series
Title Lead
Series title Information and Technology Report
Series number 1999-0001
Year Published 1999
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) National Wildlife Health Center
Description 18 p.
Larger Work Type Report
Larger Work Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title Field manual of wildlife diseases: General field procedures and diseases of birds
First page 317
Last page 334
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