Poachers Hit with Large Fines and Hunting Suspensions for Violations under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994

GANDER, NL -- May 9, 2011 -- A two-year investigation by Environment Canada’s Enforcement Branch into the excessive harvest and illegal selling of migratory birds in the Twillingate and New World Island areas of Newfoundland and Labrador has resulted in convictions and heavy fines for local poachers.

Hardy Brian Dove, age 55 of Twillingate, pleaded guilty on April 11, 2011 in Provincial Court in Gander, Newfoundland and Labrador to charges under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994. He was sentenced on May 6, 2011.

Mr. Dove was fined $4,800 for illegally selling murres and eider ducks, and for exceeding the possession limit for these species. He was also fined $1,360 for monetary gain from the sale of migratory birds. Mr. Dove was also ordered to surrender a 5.8 metre boat and motor, one shotgun, a number of duck decoys, and other hunting items to the Crown. He is also prohibited for six years from hunting or being in the company of anyone hunting migratory birds.

Gary Leyte, age 55 of Virgin Arm, pleaded guilty on September 16, 2010 in Provincial Court in Gander, Newfoundland and Labrador to charges under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994. Lionel Leyte, age 32 of Virgin Arm, also pleaded guilty on September 16, 2010 and Neil Barrett, age 65 of Twillingate, pleaded guilty on October 19, 2010 all in relation to the same investigation.  

Gary Leyte was fined $3,750 for the illegal selling of murres and eider ducks and exceeding the possession limit of eider ducks. He was also fined $250 for hunting migratory birds with a shotgun capable of holding more than three rounds of ammunition. In addition, Gary Leyte was ordered to surrender a firearm, a number of duck decoys, and other hunting items to the Crown. He is also prohibited for five years from hunting or being in the company of anyone hunting migratory birds.

Lionel Leyte was fined $1,000 for the illegal selling of murres and is prohibited from hunting migratory birds for one year. Neil Barrett was fined $1,000 for the illegal selling of murres and is prohibited from hunting migratory birds for one year.

Murres, locally known as turrs, and eider ducks are protected under the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994. It is illegal to sell, offer for sale, buy or trade any migratory bird. Environment Canada’s wildlife officers enforce federal legislation which protects plant and animal species. These laws are enforced throughout Canada in collaboration with other federal departments, provincial and territorial governments, and national and international agencies and organizations.

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations
Environment Canada
819-934-8008

Date modified: