The old standby ammo has, for decades, included lead bullets. But now, concerns about how lead taints meat and can cause environmental damage, hunters are moving away from lead tipped ammo. The New York Times reported:
At least 30 states regulate the use of lead ammunition, including Oregon, where Ms. Cassens and her father met for a weeklong elk hunt this fall. In Oregon, hunters are not allowed to fire lead bullets in a number of state wildlife areas. Neighboring California, which already enforces some of the nation’s most restrictive gun laws and was the first state to prohibit lead ammunition in specific regions, recently imposed a statewide ban on that type of bullet that will go into effect next July.
Across the country, state wildlife agencies have tried a range of tactics to encourage hunters to switch from lead ammunition. In Arizona, non-lead ammunition is free in some areas, and is delivered in bulk to a Native American tribe that lives near habitats with the most vulnerable scavenger species. In Minnesota, game wardens host shooting clinics for hunters to compare copper and lead bullets, hoping to show that lead bullets break apart in ways that make them more prone to contaminate the animals they kill.