As many recall there was a vigorous discussion here last week about the possibility of reestablishing California Condors to the Columbia Basin and Hells Canyon based on historical accounts and recent biological evidence.
One of the issues brought up in the discussion was the lead bullet issue. When game is shot using lead bullets the bullets disintegrate and leave small fragments that are consumed by humans leading to health problems. This is also the case with condors which scavenge gut piles left by hunters or carcasses of animals that died from their wounds and weren’t retrieved by the hunters.
It appears that hunters are using lead to a lesser degree in condor country. Is that a possibility in more reactionary parts of the country like Idaho?
Hunters are abiding by lead bullet bans in condor country
Rocky Barker, Idaho Statesman.
David B. Moen is searching for evidence that might indicate that condors once inhabited Hells Canyon. There is already evidence that they once bred in the Columbia Gorge and even farther north into British Columbia. Is Oregon and Hells Canyon still suitable habitat for recovery?
Note: I was lucky enough to see a pair of California Condors on the Coast of California at Big Sur in 2003. As we were driving away one flew 50 feet above us. That is when you realize how immense they are with their 9 1/2 foot wingspan.