WAN Talks With Center For Biological Diversity’s, Ileene Anderson, About $15,000 Rewards Offered For Information Regarding The Killing Of 2 Endangered California Condors

Photo from Scott Frier, USFWS

This week, the Center for Biological Diversity tripled rewards from $5,000.00 to $15,000.00, for information leading to the arrests and convictions of the person or people responsible in two separate cases of the killing of California condors.

Condors, the largest flying land birds in the Western Hemisphere, are protected under California law and the federal Endangered Species Act.

The first condor was killed in Tulare CountyCalifornia, in May of this year but was not announced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service until September.

Ileene Anderson, a senior scientist with the Center, told WAN that while the details are “sketchy” as to why it took the division so long to report the incident, it may have been because they were waiting for the results of a necropsy to confirm that the bird was in fact, shot to death.

Sadly, the first condor’s cause of death was ultimately determined to be due to trauma from a gunshot wound. The condor was reportedly found dead on private property near the Blue Ridge National Wildlife Refugean area where the condors have been returning over the past few years.

Photo from Gary Kramer, USFWS

The second condor was also unlawfully shot and killed in July; this time in Kern County. The bird was discovered near the Bitter Creek Wildlife Refuge.

Two dead condors within several months? It’s unfathomable.

Justice must be served for the condors who were tragically killed, as well as for the remaining birds which are repopulating in the state.

“In 1987, there were only 22 condors believed to be left on the planet,” Anderson told WAN. “Now, there are an estimated 200. It’s exciting.”

Anderson explained that as the condors continue to move up the Sierras, they will most-likely move into other states such as Oregon and Washington.

While the growth of the condor population is positive, the shooting and killing of them is NOT!

“We hope this additional reward pushes anyone with knowledge to come forward so that these ugly crimes can be fully prosecuted,” said Anderson.

The Fish and Wildlife Service is contributing $5,000.00 to both reward funds with the Center of Biological Diversity offering an additional $10,000.00 to each as well.

Anyone with details of the incident should call the U.S. Wildlife Service’s Office of Law Enforcement in Sacramento at (916) 569-8476. Callers can remain anonymous.

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