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BIRDSNEST (AP) -- Authorities say a chemical caused the deaths of five bald eagles on Virginia's Eastern Shore.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service special agency Dan Rolince tells The Virginian-Pilot that the birds showed traces of the chemical in their system. The chemical wasn't identified.

Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Sgt. Steve Garvis says authorities believe the eagles' deaths were accidental.

Bald eagles are no longer listed under the federal Endangered Species Act. But they're still protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty act and other federal measures. The person or persons responsible for the deaths can be fined more than $100,000 and face a one-year prison term.

A $2,500 reward is being offered by the federal agency for information leading to a conviction.

A sixth eagle survived and was released at Bay Bay last week.

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Information from: The Virginian-Pilot, http://pilotonline.com

AP-WF-05-03-13 1726GMT

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