By Katy Moeller
Three of four Nampa youths who were involved in poaching a trumpeter swan west of Star in February have been charged in connection with the crime, Idaho Department of Fish & Game officials said Monday.
The poached swan was found at the edge of a pond near Bent Lane by a district conservation officer. The trumpeter swan is the largest swan in the world; there is no hunting season on trumpeter swans in Idaho.
Fish & Game officials said the department’s call for public assistance in finding the culprits generated numerous tips. Rewards for information leading to a conviction were offered by Citizens Against Poaching, Humane Society of the United States and Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust.
The youths received five citations and four warnings, including illegal take of a migratory bird, aid in the commission of a misdemeanor, and hunting without a license.
Warnings were issued for illegal take of a migratory bird with an unlawful firearm, and three counts of using a motorized vehicle as an aid in hunting.
Investigators also determined that one of the suspects had poached a great blue heron. That suspect received an additional citation for possession of a non-game protected bird. A shotgun and .22 caliber rifle were seized as evidence.