2 men accused of killing American Bald eagle in Nebraska with plans to eat it, officials say

Two men in Nebraska were cited for shooting and killing an American Bald Eagle and apparently had plans to eat the protected bird, officials said.

The Stanton County, Neb., Sheriff's Office said in a Feb. 28 news release that deputies received a report of a suspicious vehicle in the Wood Duck Recreation Area near Norfolk, which is northwest of Omaha. When deputies arrived, they discovered that two men were in possession of a dead Bald eagle.

Officials learned that the men – both nationals from Honduras – had shot and killed the Bald eagle with a rifle and "stated they planned on cooking and eating the bird," according to the news release.

Both Bald eagles and Golden Eagles are protected species.

The two men were cited for unlawful possession of the eagle, the agency said. Additional charges regarding the illegal killing of the bird were possible, the release said.

The eagle's remains and a rifle were turned over to Nebraska Game and Parks, the sheriff's office said.