Monday, December 01, 2008

Did you know...

that President Bush pardoned Leslie Owen Collier, convicted of killing Bald Eagles when the raptors died after consuming pesticide-laced coyote carcasses?
The 1995 incident that changed the life of the farmer from the Charleston area of southeastern Missouri began when he noticed an increasing number of wild turkeys, which were believed to have died away. "I got it in my head that if I eliminated some of the coyotes it would give the turkeys a jump-start," on their comeback, Collier said.

So he put out hamburger meat laced with the pesticide Furadan in an effort to kill the coyotes. It worked; seven coyotes died.

The problem occurred when the eagles fed on the coyotes' carcasses. They died, too. So did a red-tailed hawk and a great horned owl, among other animals.

The birds are federally protected and killing them is illegal. Collier said the crime became a felony when the second eagle died. He pleaded guilty in late 1995 and received two years of probation.

While he didn't go to jail, the conviction was hard on Collier. He was ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution. As a convicted felon, the longtime hunter had to give up his guns. ...

So Black and other supporters began writing letters seeking a pardon. Several months ago, U.S. Attorney Catherine Hanaway contacted Black and requested the full story. Hanaway had been asked by a pardon attorney for the Department of Justice for input about the possibility of a pardon.

Hanaway said she spoke with federal prosecutors familiar with the case, with the judge, even with people in the Charleston area who know Collier. "By all accounts ... he is a pillar of the community down there," she said.
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that Connie Kogler, a WildBird Birder of the Year candidate, appeared in a "New York Times" article on Nov. 27? The article focuses on Project FeederWatch, which began Nov. 8 and will continue into April. It's not too late to sign up for the citizen-science project.

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that the Nov. 15 fire in Corona, Calif. -- known as the Freeway Complex fire -- burned more than 95 percent of Chino Hills State Park? The park's 14,100 acres used to provide habitat for 200 bird species, including the endangered Bell's Vireo subspecies (Vireo bellii pusillus). A photo gallery from the article appears here.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Rick said...

"The problem occurred when the eagles fed on the coyotes' carcasses."

Journalists! The problem "occurred" when the guy spread strychnine.

December 02, 2008 11:33 AM  
Blogger Leigh said...

UGH. Situations like this are why I'm planning to get a degree environmental law. 3 years of law school for decades of environmental protection :) Wish the U.S. would sue Bush for ruining their country.

December 03, 2008 10:34 AM  

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