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Reward Offered for Information on Shooting of Whooping Cranes

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement agents are still looking for information regarding two endangered whooping cranes that were shot to death in Acadia Parish on May 20, 2016.

The cranes were found just south of Rayne off of Hwy. 35 and Hains Hwy. on the afternoon of May 20. The cranes were recovered and sent in for a necropsy, which revealed they were both shot.

“We wanted to refresh this news release because we believe that there are people out there that know something about who shot these cranes,” said Col. Sammy Martin, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division. “This has been an active investigation for almost two years now and while we do have leads and information we are investigating, we still need people to come forward to assist in this case.”

Up to $9,000 is being offered by various groups for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the illegal killing of these whooping cranes. LDWF’s Operation Game Thief program and the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation are each offering a reward of up to $1,000; The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and The Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust are offering up to $5,000. LDWF also received a total of $2,000 from private donations.

Anyone with information regarding these illegal killings should call the Louisiana Operation Game Thief hotline at 1-800-442-2511 or use LDWF’s tip411 program. To use the tip411 program, residents can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the “LADWF Tips” app. The hotline and the tip411 are monitored 24 hours a day. Upon request, informants can remain anonymous.

LDWF has released 125 whooping cranes since 2011 and are currently tracking 66 whooping cranes. The cranes in this case were released in December of 2015.