Three Iowa men face charges in connection with swans reportedly being shot.
Officers with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources were tipped off that swans had been shot on Sunday, October 18, 2015, according to the Iowa DNR News. The three Trumpeter swans were shot near Fort Madison and three men were charged in connection.
According to the DNR News, 70-year-old Richard Holbert and 59-year-old Vinson Davis each pleaded guilty to unlawful take of a protected non-game species, failure to exhibit game to a conservation officer, and abandonment of dead wildlife. The report said that 84-year-old James Conaway pleaded not-guilty to those same charges.
Investigators found the three dead Trumpeter swans hidden from view in an area near a duck blind that the men had been using, according to the Iowa DNR. The blind was located four miles south of Fort Madison along the Mississippi River.
“I can’t say enough about how important the information was that we received from other hunters in investigating this case,” said DNR Conservation Officer Ben Schlader. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”
According to Iowa DNR News, the officers seized three shotguns, an ATV, and a boat with oars during their investigation.
Additionally, Holbert was charged with abandonment of dead wildlife for a wood duck that was left in a duck blind, the DNR News reported. Davis was additionally charged with use of lead shot while waterfowl hunting.
Holbert and Davis will each be responsible for paying $1,500 in restitution for the swans. If Conaway is convicted, he too will be responsible for paying $1,500 in restitution.