Originally published Tuesday, October 1, 2019 at 09:07a.m.

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona wildlife officials are urging hunters to use non-lead ammunition to protect California condors.

The Arizona Game and Fish Department issued a reminder Sept. 27 that some hunters who drew hunt tags in northern Arizona can get free non-lead ammunition.

The agency says the free ammunition program applies to hunters hunting in the north Kaibab National Forest and Arizona Strip.

They should have received information about the program in the mail.

According to the agency, 88 percent of hunters have voluntarily used ammunition without lead since 2008.

Those who use lead ammunition are urged to remove gut piles that may contain lead shot and bullet fragments.

Lead poisoning is the leading cause of death found among endangered condors in Arizona as well as southern Utah.

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