LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – A Rayne man accused of killing an endangered whooping crane will spend five years on probation.
28-year old Kaenon A. Constantin was convicted for killing and transporting a federally protected and endangered whooping crane. Constantin must also pay a $85,000 dollars in fines and restitution.
Authorities say Constantin and a juvenile, using .22 caliber rifles, shot at a pair of whooping cranes located in a field within Acadia Parish, Louisiana. One of the cranes fell dead in the field, and Constantin and his accomplice retrieved its carcass. The other crane flew too far north into another field so that it could not be retrieved, but investigators later recovered its carcass. When first approached by authorities about the shooting, Constantin denied any involvment, but authorities said almost 2 years after the incident, he did confess.
“Our agents take any investigation of illegally shooting whooping cranes very seriously. Chief of LDWF Enforcement Col. Chad Hebert and I applaud the judge in this case for imposing severe monetary punishments to help deter anyone from this behavior,” said LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet. “The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has spent a lot of resources in an effort to bring back the native whooping crane to a sustainable population, and senseless shootings like this case make that mission much more problematic.”