Reward grows in whooping crane killings

An Operation Migration pilot flies an Ultralight aircraft to lead whooping cranes past the Dunnellon Airport in Dunnellon, Fla. on Thursday, Jan. 22, 2009. The seven birds were on their 87th day of the migration which began Oct. 17 at the Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Wisconsin. The seven birds which continued onto Dunnellon will end their 1,285 mile trip at the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge in Crystal River. The whooping crane migration is part of the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership, with members from the United States and Canada. The organization works to ensure the whooping crane's survival. There are only about 390 whooping cranes left in the wild in North America.

Published: Thursday, January 27, 2011 at 7:52 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 27, 2011 at 7:52 p.m.

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. — Members of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Board and the state DNR Foundation have donated an additional $4,800 to a reward fund for information in the killings of three migrating whooping cranes.

Three of the endangered birds were found shot to death in Calhoun County, Ga. in December. The reward in the case now totals $20,800.

Dan Forster, wildlife resources director for the Georgia DNR, said a landowner in the southwest Georgia county contacted his office after the birds were found dead on his property.

The cranes were part of a group of 11 released in Wisconsin in October and were migrating to Florida.

Authorities say there are about 570 whooping cranes left in the world, about 400 in the wild.

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