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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Hunter pleads guilty to shooting tundra swan

Monday, January 10, 2005

A Clinton man lost his hunting privileges for a year and forfeited his gun after pleading guilty to shooting a migrating tundra swan during goose-hunting season at the Goose Lake Wildlife Area.

Brian L. Petersen, 24, had his lawyer submit the guilty plea in Clinton County Magistrate Court without explaining whether Petersen knowingly shot the large, white swan.

Petersen was also fined more than $3,000.

"He admitted to us during our interview that he did know the difference between swans and geese," state conservation officer Mike Macke said.

State wildlife biologist Bob Sheets described the bird as a first-cousin to the trumpeter swan, which is part of an ongoing wild-nesting and release effort across eastern Iowa, including the release of two swans Wednesday at the Hurstville Interpretive Center north of Maquoketa

The tundra swan migrates through the area during the late fall.

"I would say this does not represent the majority of the sportsmen in the field," Sheets said. "Our swan restoration program depends on good identification, and most sportsmen are pretty careful."

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