2 men cited, 523 stolen alligator eggs seized

2 men cited, 523 stolen alligator eggs seized

GRAND CHENIER (WAFB) - Two men have been cited and 523 alligator eggs were seized after agents with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries stopped the men as they were exiting the marsh near Grand Chenier, near the Rockefeller wildlife refuge last week.

On July 16, agents stopped 47-year-old Paul A. Canik of Grand Chenier and 24-year-old Christopher M. Trahan of Lake charge as they were exiting the marsh in an air boat and flatboat.

At the time, Canik told agents the 523 alligator eggs were taken from areas he was permitted to collect eggs from. During the investigation, agents revealed the nest sites where the eggs came from were not in an area Canik had been permitted to collect from.

The alligator eggs, the air boat and the flatboat were seized and agents with LDWF sold the eggs at market value for a total of $10,460. If the men are found not guilty, they will be entitled to the restitution from the sale of the eggs.

To collect alligator eggs legally, a person needs to have an egg collection permit, and have permission from the land owner or own the land the eggs are on.

First offense for taking unpermitted alligator eggs carries a $400 to $900 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

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