Hunting meats can cause health problems – US scientists


By Agency Reporter

Scientists in the United States have warned that consumers of wild game a.k.a bushmeat, which were killed by lead bullets, might have higher blood levels of lead than those who do not eat such meat.

Bushmeat is a popular delicacy in Nigeria. The News Agency of Nigeria reports that scientists from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and the North Dakota Department of Health, made their findings known in a statement issued to newsmen on Friday in New York. They said earlier this year, they had conducted a study and tested blood collected from 738 North Dakotans.

“In the study, people, who ate a lot of wild game tended to have higher lead levels than those, who ate little or none. “The study also showed that the more the consumption of wild game harvested with lead bullets, the higher the level of lead in the blood,” one of the scientists, an epidemiologist, Dr Stephen Pickard said. Pickard also said, “Because, we know that lead exposure can cause serious health problems, especially for children and pregnant women. We are providing more definitive guidelines for hunters and others, who may eat wild game shot with lead bullets.”

The researchers also said they recommended pregnant women and children younger than 6 years, not to eat any meat from animals harvested with lead bullets. The scientists added, “Older children and other adults are advised to minimise their potential exposure to lead and use their judgment about consuming game (bush meat) that was taken using lead-based ammunition.”