Swans removed from the lake at Desert Shores

LAS VEGAS - They've been part of the Desert Shores landscape for years but now, they are gone.

Following two separate attacks over the years, the black swans living at the lake have found a new home in Illinois. They will be missed by many in the northwest valley community.

It's a manmade oasis in the desert. A northwest valley community surrounded by water. Many species of animals call the Desert Shores home, even swans.

The black birds are hard to miss. More than 30 of them took refuge in the lake where they thought they were safe.

"My heart was kind of broken," said Tina Baeur. "I rushed, but by 8 o'clock they were already loaded in a truck. I just took a last glimpse of them and um, very emotional, very sad.

The swans that once filled this part of the Desert Shores lake, are now gone. The birds, which are privately owned, were rounded up and loaded up into a truck this morning after being sold to a breeder in Illinois.

The decision comes a month after a swan was shot and killed with an arrow. And that wasn't the first attack.

Last February, a teenager was sentenced to probation and counseling for killing swans and other birds that live here.

"You don't shoot an innocent swan or go up and mutilate a bird," said Dana Leipziger. You don't do that."

The new owner of the swans told 8 News NOW he understands the birds are used to a warmer and dryer climate in the desert, but he says he's already made arrangements to make sure they all adjust to their new environment.

"We have a huge heated barn back home, heated ponds for winter months," said Bob Knox, swan breeder.

He said, it took about two hours to gather the birds. He does plan to keep the families together.

"We put bands on them so we know which male goes with which female and which families belong together.

As they make their way to their new home, residents at Desert Shores will have to get use to walking around the lake, without seeing the black swans.

A $5,000 reward is still on the table for information on who's responsible for killing a swan last month. If you have information, you're urged to call Crimestoppers at (702)385-5555.

 


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