The killing of bald eagles on Maryland’s Eastern Shore – the history of a dirty little secret

In February 2016, 13 dead bald eagles were found on a farm field in Federalsburg, Md. and stories were seen about it around about it the world.

A few weeks later, more dead bald eagles were found in Sussex County, De.

After the initial stories were shared and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said humans were responsible, no charges would be filed and they were closing the Federalburg case, reporters seemed to lose interest in following up on the story.

I didn’t and since 2016, I’ve continued reporting on the issue.

These are the articles I wrote in order from the earliest to the most recent:

13 reasons why I didn’t give up on the bald eagle story –

Opinion: An epidemic the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service doesn’t want you to know about –

Confirmed link in some of the bald eagle poisonings –

New information in Eastern Shore bald eagle poisonings –

Though bald eagle cases have been happening for years, a law that could help was never enacted in Maryland –

The ‘Carbo Wars’ –

Carbofuran Possession Bill to be Introduced to Maryland General Assembly  –

“How many dead bodies do you want us to bring you before you take action” –

Public health concern left in wake of eagle poisonings in Maryland – carbofuran loophole bill delayed –

11 eagles poisoned in 2019 Chestertown case found on property used as regulated shooting area –

Bald eagles in 2016 Delaware case poisoned by carbofuran –

Controlling nuisance wildlife while protecting our national symbol (by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and they mention RSAs) –

Safely dispose of carbofuran this Saturday and safeguard our national symbol –

30 dead bald eagles in Maryland – how Virginia solved the problem, but Maryland didn’t –

With at least 30 bald eagles killed by carbofuran in Maryland in the last 12 years, House Bill 1025 aims to eliminate the toxic pesticide in the state –

Editorial: Beth Decker (AKA Elizabeth Lindenau), an animal hoarder, worked with two non-profits devoted to birds –

Editorial: The death of House Bill 1025 leaves concerns about eagles –

Donna L. Cole is an award-winning reporter and speaker who currently works for WNAV News. For her reporting work on the eagle poisonings, she received the 2019 and 2020 Society of Professional Journalists DC Pro Chapter Dateline Awards for Investigative Journalism, the 2018 Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association Outstanding Enterprise Journalism award and the 2019 Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association award for Documentary/In-Depth Reporting.  Her work also led to changes in pesticide licensing regulations in Maryland, the first ever carbofuran pesticide advisory being issued by the state of Maryland and House Bill 1025, that aimed to ban the possession of carbofuran in Maryland and rid of the state of stockpiles of the toxic pesticide. The bill died in committee due to opposition from the Maryland Farm Bureau.

For groups interested in hearing more about this topic, visit the speaking engagements page of this website.

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