The Bald Eagle has been the national emblem of the United States since 1782. They were once endangered by hunting and pesticides. In 1940 the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act was passed to protect Bald and Golden Eagle. The federal law prohibits the possession, sale, purchase, barter, offer to sell, transport, export or import, of any bald or golden eagle, alive or dead, including their feathers and parts, nests, nest trees, and winter/nighttime roosts, unless allowed by permit.
The bird is considered sacred by the American Indians and the eagles play an important role in their religious ceremonies. Each year the National Eagle Repository in Colorado bags more than 2,000 dead birds and freezes the animals before delivering them to waiting Native American Indian tribes to use in religious rituals.
Swipe left for a classic portrait of the bald eagle.