California bans lead ammunition

From ANIMAL PEOPLE,  October 2013: (Actually published on November 20,  2013.)

LOS ANGELES––California Governor Jerry Brown on October 11, 2013 endorsed into law a total ban on the use of lead ammunition for hunting––the first adopted by any state,  though use of lead ammunition is regulated in at least 30 states.  The California Fish & Game Commission will have until July 1, 2019,  to fully enforce the lead ban. Lead poisoning is the leading cause of death of endangered California condors.  California in 2007 banned use of lead shot in eight counties to protect the condors,  but a record 21 condors,  9% of the total wild population,  were treated for lead poisoning at the Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens in October 2013. The last 22 California condors then living were trapped in 1982 for captive breeding.  Restoration of California condors to the wild began in 1997.  The current wild population is 231.  About 170 are at zoos and breeding centers. California condors ingest lead while scavenging the remains of animals who have been shot by hunters.   About half of the free-flying California condor population have been treated for lead poisoning at least once.  Trapped twice a year for blood testing,  about a third of the condors show elevated lead levels;  about 20% per year require treatment.

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