JACKMAN (AP) – Federal wildlife officials said Friday they are offering a reward for information leading to a conviction in the killing of a bald eagle in western Maine.

The adult eagle was found dead near the Scott Road in Jackman by a hunter, who turned the carcass over to a Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife biologist on Nov. 19, Special Agent Tom Cloherty of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said.

The eagle appears to have been shot, in violation of state and three federal laws. Federal law sets penalties of $15,000 and one year in prison for killing a bald eagle.

State and federal wildlife officials are seeking information from the public that may lead to a conviction in the bird’s killing. They are offering a reward of half of any fine collected up to $2,500 for information leading to a conviction.

“We’re hoping a that hunter or woodsman who may have witnessed the shooting or know who is responsible for killing this bird will step forward,” said Cloherty.

The eagle is being sent to a federal wildlife forensics laboratory in Ashland, Ore., for a complete analysis of its death.

Anyone with information can contact the Maine Warden Service’s Operation Game Thief at 1-800-ALERT-US or the federal game office at 207-469-6842.

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