Newfoundland and Labrador bird hunters fined and lose hunting privileges and hunting gear

GANDER, N.L. -- April 18, 2012 -- Richard Gillett, age 40, Casey Baggs, age 42, and Lee Baggs, age 41, all from Twillingate, were sentenced on April 2 in Provincial Court in Gander, Newfoundland and Labrador, after being convicted of offences under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994.

Richard Gillett was fined $1,500 for hunting migratory game birds, specifically eiders, from a moving powerboat. He was fined an additional $500 for hunting migratory game birds with toxic lead shot. He is prohibited for two years from holding a migratory bird hunting permit or hunting migratory birds.

Casey Baggs and Lee Baggs were each fined $750 for hunting migratory game birds, specifically eiders, from a moving powerboat. They were each fined an additional $500 for hunting migratory game birds with toxic lead shot. They are prohibited for two years from hunting migratory birds, or from being in the company of anyone hunting migratory birds.

All items seized during the investigation were ordered forfeited to the Crown, including three shotguns, ammunition, duck decoys and nine eider ducks.

Hunting migratory game birds, such as eiders, from a motorized vehicle or powerboat in motion is prohibited because it is considered harassment as it prevents the birds from having the opportunity to rest and feed. Instead, hunters can use decoys to attract eiders and other seaducks. Hunters are allowed to hunt other non-game birds, such as murres, from powerboats.

Hunting waterfowl with lead shot has been banned in Canada since 1999. Waterfowl are poisoned when they ingest toxic lead pellets. Lead is listed on the Canadian Environment Protection Act, 1999, List of Toxic Substances.

Environment Canada enforces federal wildlife legislation which protects plant and animal species throughout Canada. This is done in collaboration with other federal departments, provincial and territorial governments as well as international agencies and organizations.

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