DPIPWE investigating fatal shooting of wedge-tailed eagle in Northern Tasmania

 Wedge-tailed eagles are listed as an endangered species in Tasmania.
Wedge-tailed eagles are listed as an endangered species in Tasmania.

An investigation is underway into the fatal shooting of a Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle in the state’s North.

The endangered bird of prey was found with a gunshot wound to the leg on April 13 by members of the public. 

It was taken to the Animal Medical Centre in Launceston, but could not be saved.

An x-ray of the eagle.

An x-ray of the eagle.

Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment wildlife operations section head Luke Bond said the eagle could have been shot any time up to a week before being found.

“We’re really seeking some support from the public,” Mr Bond said. 

“People know about this, obviously, someone’s done it - it didn’t happen by accident.

“People intentionally go out and shoot eagles and it’s time this sort of stupid behaviour stopped. It’s criminal. It robs the state of its natural assets.

“It’s criminal behaviour and we need people to stand up against it and come forward with information.”

Environment Minister Elise Archer said the government committed last year to changing the law to strengthen penalties for deliberately killing threatened species.

“The shooting of this endangered eagle is a heinous act that deserves to be condemned,” she said. “Whoever is responsible needs to face the consequences of their actions, and I urge anyone with information to anonymously contact DPIPWE or Crime Stoppers to help identify those responsible.”

Mr Bond said DPIPWE wanted to hear from people who had information about eagles being shot anywhere in the state.

Anyone with information can anonymously contact DPIPWE’s Wildlife Operations Branch on 0427 437 020 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.