Dead fish slingshot ensures dramatic eagle photos as birds swoop for their meals in Iowa

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In this Jan. 29, 2014 photo Ken Kester of Clinton, Iowa, uses an oversized homemade slingshot that flings dead fish into the open water for Bald Eagles to to feed on at Lock and Dam 14 on the Mississippi River near Le Claire, Iowa. Kester, who built the contraption, calls it a fish launcher. It can toss a fish a couple hundred feet into the chanel where the water is calmer and eagles feel comfortable snatching up the meals. (AP Photo/The Quad City Times, Kevin E. Schmidt)

LECLAIRE, Iowa (AP) — The photographers who line up at a Mississippi River lock to snap images of eagles are getting help from a man with a giant slingshot that flings dead fish into the open water.

Ken Kester, who built the contraption, calls it a "fish launcher."

Kester sets up the slingshot at Lock and Dam 14 in Le Claire, Iowa. He tells the Quad-City Times (http://bit.ly/1iUnj9N ) it can toss fish a couple hundred feet into the channel, where the water is calmer and eagles feel comfortable snatching up the meals.

Photographers line elbow-to-elbow to make images of the eagles, and the slingshot ensures more dramatic pictures.

Iowa conservation officer Jeff Harrison says flinging fish into the river is fine as long as the fish come from the local pool of water.

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Information from: Quad-City Times, http://www.qctimes.com

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