Feb 24, 2012 at 3:58 pm
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A southern Minnesota farmer accused of destroying hundreds of federally protected white pelican chicks.has been sentenced to two years probation.
Fifty-nine-year-old Craig Staloch of Minnesota Lake also was ordered Monday to pay a fine of $12,500 and complete 100 hours of community service related to wildlife preservation.
Staloch pleaded guilty last November to one count of violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, a federal misdemeanor. In his plea agreement, Staloch admitted he killed and attempted to kill a large number of American white pelicans.
Federal prosecutors say a state wildlife specialist who visited the farmland last May found numerous pelican nests and told Staloch not to disturb them. The specialist returned the next day and found most of the eggs in the nests smashed and countless chicks dead.