Bald eagle shot and killed in Wayne County, Mo. -

Bald eagle shot and killed in Wayne County, Mo.

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Wayne County Journal-Banner Wayne County Journal-Banner

WAYNE COUNTY, Mo ( -- A bald eagle was reportedly shot and killed near Patterson, Missouri over the weekend.

Missouri Department of Conservation agents received a call Sunday night from a citizen who found the injured bird, and though it was alive when agents arrived, it later died due to its injuries.

The bird was found on County Road 332 and x-rays later revealed bullet fragments in the body.

The eagle was young, and did not have the white plumage around the head that serves as the signature identifier of the species. Adults plumage usually takes about five years to develop, so the bird was still in the first quarter of its life.

Bald eagles are protected by Federal law and killing one can result in a $250,000 fine and up to two years in prison.

Missouri conservation agents plan to offer a reward for information related to the arrest and conviction of the person who shot the eagle. People with information are allowed to remain anonymous.

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