Md. agriculture officials issue warnings on pesticide implicated in bald eagle deaths

Maryland’s Department of Agriculture is issuing warnings about the illegal use of the pesticide carbofuran as state and federal officials continue their investigation into the poisoning deaths of bald eagles on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

The advisory reminds farmers, applicators and retailers that using or selling carbofuran — sold as Furadan — is illegal under state and federal law, even when applied as directed. Penalties can include prison and a fine of up to $25,000.

The EPA revoked use of carbofuran in 2009. Officials with Marylands’ Department of Agriculture say it’s not illegal to possess the pesticide, but it has to be stored properly and cannot be used, sold or traded.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Maryland Department of Natural Resources Police are investigating several poisonings of seven bald eagles and one great horned owl in Kent and Talbot counties. In 2016, 13 bald eagles were poisoned in similar circumstances in Caroline County.

The USFWS is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information in the case.

For information on how to properly dispose of carbofuran, you can call the Pesticide Regulation Section at 410-841-5710 or refer to the MDA’s website.

Maryland officials say anyone with information about illegal fishing or wildlife, or illegal killing of wildlife can call Maryland Wildlife Crime Stoppers at 443-433-4112. Callers can remain anonymous.

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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