whooping cranes

Skylar Primm / Flickr

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says a female whooping crane released about a year ago has been shot in Vermilion Parish and had to be put to death.

Spokesman Adam Einck said Wednesday there's a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the conviction of whoever shot the endangered bird.

He says the bird was found Nov. 2 with an apparent bullet wound in her upper left leg and was euthanized the next day at the Louisiana State University veterinary school.

Twenty-eight endangered whooping cranes now live in the wild in southwest Louisiana.

The state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says 14 youngsters brought to Gueydan on Nov. 29 were released Monday. They join 14 adults — two released in early 2011 and 12 released late last year in the White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area in Vermilion Parish.

14 more whooping cranes to join flock in Louisiana

Sep 17, 2012

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says 14 young whooping cranes are expected to arrive soon in southwest Louisiana.

That will double the number in a flock being reintroduced near the area where the state's last wild flock once lived.

Twenty-six whoopers have been brought to Louisiana, but predators and disease killed nearly half of them.

Biologists say deaths are expected, since the birds must learn to live in the wild. But teenage hunters killed two. The department is working to teach people why the birds need protection.