Three arrested over keeping Crested Cranes

Crested Crane birds in Uganda

Kisoro, Uganda | URN | Three people in Kisoro district have been arrested over allegedly possessing three Crested Cranes contrary to wildlife regulations.

The suspects are Dan Iradukunda, 22, a resident of Bunagana in Muramba Sub County, George Habyarimana, 25, a resident of Gahiza in Buhozi parish Busanza Sub County and Hillary Tumushime, 28, a Boda Boda cyclist at Bunagana stage in Bunagana town board.

They were arrested on Thursday 2nd, January 2020 afternoon while taking the three Crested Cranes to Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Samuel Amanya, the Chief Warden Mughinga National Park says that they have been receiving complaints of people trafficking Crested Cranes to Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Christopher Ruhunde, Kisoro District Police Commander, says that the suspects are being held at Kisoro Police Station as investigations into the matter continue.

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While at the police station, Iradukunda and Habyarimana said that they have been selling the Crested Cranes to a Congolese woman only identified as Eva at 150,000 shillings each.

Three arrested over keeping Crested Cranes
Uganda’s national bird, The Grey-crowned Crane

However, Tumushiime denied having knowledge about Crested Cranes trafficking saying that he was only hired by Iradukunda and Habyarimana to ride them to the border at Busanza.

The Crested Crane is a National Symbol on the Coat of Arms and also a protected bird.