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Posted 11/24/15 (Tue)

Biologists, doctors and researchers from the scientific community in 2013 released a consensus statement that concluded the following:

  • Lead is one of the most well-studied of all anthropogenic toxins and there is overwhelming scientific evidence demonstrating that there is no safe level of lead exposure for children; and
  • Lead-based ammunition is likely the greatest, largely unregulated source of lead knowingly discharged into the environment in the United States; and
  • The discharge of lead-based ammunition and accumulation of spent lead-based ammunition in the environment poses significant health risks to humans and wildlife; and
  • Lead-based ammunition is a significant source of lead exposure in humans that ingest wild game, and people consuming meat shot with lead-based ammunition have been shown to have lead pellets/fragments in the gastrointestinal tract; and
  • Lead poisoning from ingestion of spent lead-based ammunition fragments poses a serious and significant threat to wildlife, including wild scavenging species such as the bald and golden eagle; and
  • Given the overwhelming evidence for the toxic effects of lead in humans and wildlife, even at very low exposure levels, convincing data that the discharge of lead-based ammunition into the environment poses significant risks of lead exposure to humans and wildlife, and the availability of non-lead alternative products for hunting, the [science community] supports reducing and eventually eliminating the introduction of lead into the environment from lead-based ammunition.

Because of this evidence, the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe Dept. of Wildlife, Fish and Recreation began a lead ammunition ban in 2016:

  • Lead ammunition phase-out began on February 1, 2016 for only shotgun ammunition.
  • A lead ban exemption may be requested by any hunter for the use of a vintage firearm that is likely to be damaged by the use of non-lead ammunition.  Exemptions will be valid as long as the hunter retains ownership of the exempted firearm   Exemption applications are available online or at the Wildlife Department and must be approved by the Director.