ESSEXVILLE (AP) – A young bald eagle that nearly died from lead poisoning after feeding on a deer carcass is expected to be returned to the wild.

Consumers Energy says the eagle will be released Friday afternoon from the utility’s Karn Generating Complex in Essexville, northeast of Saginaw.

A raptor rehabilitation pen is located at the complex. Consumers Energy says more than 500 birds of prey have been released since 1993 from the pen.

The eagle was found in Gladwin County in November and was being treated by a specialist and students in Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. It later was taken to the raptor rehabilitation pen.

State Natural Resources officials say the ingestion of bullet fragments and spent lead shot are some sources for lead poisoning in birds.

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