UPDATE: Bald eagle found killed near Beatrice - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

UPDATE: Bald eagle found killed near Beatrice

Posted: Updated: March 15, 2013 04:58 PM CDT

Posted By:  KLKN Newsroom

Beatrice, NE - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials say the eagle was found February 13th.

Now, a $1,000 reward is being offered to anyone who has information. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is investigating the shooting of a young bald eagle. The bird was found by a local land owner on Wednesday near Hickory road Northeast of Beatrice...

Authorities determined it was killed with a rifle and left where it was shot. Executive Director of Raptor Recovery, Betsy Finch, says deaths like this are unnecessary.

"Unfortunately, we do see gun shot eagles every year. I don't understand why people shoot them," Finch said.

Bald eagles are guarded under the Golden Eagle Protection Act and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.  Killing one is punishable by up to a $100,000 fine and a year in prison.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Special Agent Ellen Geckler says the bird was immature. It didn't have the notorious white head and tail.

Geckler says it's possible the shooter didn't know they were aiming at a bald eagle.

On Facebook, one viewer said, "This infuriates me. The bald eagle is our national bird."

Another person said, "Wow! How dare someone do that! I hope you can be found and put in prison."

Ballistics are under way to determine the type of rifle used in the shooting.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at 402-419-4855 or Nebraska Wildlife crime stoppers at 1-800-742-7627.

Both are offering rewards and say you can remain anonymous.

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