Lead shot update


Photo by ALBOWIEB, Flickr.

Governor Terry Branstad overturned the ban on lead shot earlier in the month, making lead shot legal for the upcoming dove-hunting season.

Originally, the use of lead shot for dove hunting was banned by the Natural Resources Commission due to lead’s harmful environmental effects. The dove season opens on September 1.

As noted on our radio segment, the biggest concern with lead shot are the unwanted wildlife deaths. Animals ingest the lead pellets after mistaking them for food.

Branstad opposed the ban in large part because he felt the Natural Resources Commission exceeded their authority when they issued it.

Read more from the Sioux City Journal here.

Sierra Club files suit over lead shot

Photo by Alex E. Proimos.

Controversy over the use of lead shot continues in Iowa. Now the Iowa Sierra Club has filed a lawsuit claiming that a legislative committee acted unconstitutionally.

The Administrative Rules Review Committee (ARRC) voted in August to delay the implementation of a ruling by the Natural Resources Commission (NRC) banning the use of lead shot for dove hunting in Iowa.

The Sierra Club argues that since the ARRC is part of the legislative branch, and the NRC is part of the executive branch, the ARRC couldn’t constitutionally stop the NRC’s ruling.

Due to the delay, the Senate can still debate the lead shot issue this session. If the Senate doesn’t take action, the ban will go into effect at the beginning of September when the dove season starts.

For more information, read The Gazette’s article here.

House votes to nullify lead shot regulation

Photo by waitscm, Flickr.

The Iowa House voted Thursday to nullify a state administrative rule that banned the use of lead shot by dove hunters.

The regulation was originally proposed by the Natural Resource Commission, a citizen panel appointed by the governor.

Many environmental advocates oppose the rule’s nullification, and argue that lead shot can harm the environment by poisoning animals that inadvertently ingest the pellets.

“Lead has proven to be harmful,” said Rep. Anesa Kajtazovic, D-Waterloo. “ I have done much research on this, and the most surprising feedback I’ve had from my constituents has been from those who do hunt who say, ‘You know, lead is not necessary.’ They are concerned about the impact that it will have on the wildlife and what kind of a planet it will leave for their kids and grandkids.”

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Lead shot regulation faces opposition

Lead shot is often used in the hunting of mourning doves.

A pair of legislative panels today voted in favor of abolishing a state administrative rule that would ban the use of lead shot in the hunting of mourning doves. It is predicted that the Iowa House and Senate will agree to nullify the regulation as early as next week.

The regulation was originally proposed by the Natural Resource Commission, a citizen panel appointed by the governor.

Many hunters use lead shot as an effective and inexpensive alternative to other types of ammunition, but environmental advocates argue that lead pellets harm the environment by poisoning the animals that inadvertently ingest them.

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Update on the lead shot debate

Photo by Engleking's, Flickr

In early November, the Iowa Environmental Focus aired a radio segment on the debate over the use of lead shot. Many hunters use lead pellets because they are cheap and effective. Environmental advocates argue against lead shot primarily because animals ingest these lead pellet, which can cause death.

This past year, hunters were able to use lead shot during the dove hunting season despite numerous attempts to ban its use.

The Des Moines Register just released an article with an update on the use of lead shot during the forthcoming dove hunting season. According to the article, the lead shot ban will be enacted unless lawmakers make a change before the Legislature adjourns this spring.

Read the full article here.

On the Radio: Lead shot – Better hunting at greater costs

Photo by Chris Isherwood, Flickr.

Listen to this week’s radio segment here or read the transcript below.  It discusses the use of lead shot during Iowa’s dove hunting season.

Many hunters view the use of lead shot pellets as part of tradition, but this tradition is spreading a toxic chemical throughout our environment. Continue reading

Debate over lead shot goes national

Photo by Engelking's, Flickr

Iowa’s debate over the use of lead ammunition for dove-hunting is now receiving national attention. Major publications including USA Today picked up the story that puts environmentalist and many hunters on opposing sides.

Environmentalist worry that fragments of the toxic lead shots, which closely resemble seeds, will be eaten by animals and ultimately cause their death. An editorial in the Des Moines Register even suggests that the levels of lead deposited during the hunting season could cause health effects in humans.

On the other side, many hunters value lead shots over the non-toxic steel alternative because they’re cheaper and some find them more effective.

The decision to allow lead shot, like the decision to allow dove hunting in general, may be influenced by the economic boost provided by hunters. It’s estimated that Iowa dove hunters will contribute nearly $7 million this year.