Monday, July 11, 2016

Patrols up in New Mexico after rare species of owl killed

More officers have been put on patrol in the Caja del Rio area near Santa Fe after the reported killing of a burrowing owl, a federal land management official said. Such a killing is rare, and the incident is being taken seriously, Bureau of Land Management spokeswoman Donna Hummel said. The species is among those protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported. “There are lots of eyes and ears and people that care about wildlife here in New Mexico,” Hummel said. “And (the shooter’s) illegal actions are not going to go unnoticed.” Killing the protected owl could mean as much as six months in prison and a $500 fine, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The owl’s death appears to have been caused by a gunshot, New Mexico Wildlife Center spokeswoman Dawn Wright said. Bird watcher Julie Luetzelschwab photographed two burrowing owls on June 27, and three days later one of them was missing. The owl was found nearby. One leg was missing and the wings were spread as if it had been flying when it was struck. X-rays showed shrapnel in the bird’s left wing and shoulder blade...more

And don't forget, each one of those agents has "a primary semi-automatic handgun, a backup semi-automatic handgun, a shotgun and a semi-automatic rifle."

The BLM Bird Patrol to the rescue.

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