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Poaching turtles in B.C. nets Albertans more than $1K in fines

Poaching turtles in B.C. nets Albertans more than $1K in fines

Three couples from Alberta have been fined more than $1,000 after admitting to catching turtles from a B.C. lake.

Mounties spotted the couples fishing at a small, roadside lake north of Cranbrook, and when police investigated further, found it was western painted turtles they were after rather than fish.

The turtles are a species of special concern, according to the Nature Conservancy of Canada — meaning they may become a threatened or an endangered species

« They had 15 of these small turtles, » said conservation officer Jeff Scott.

« It’s a concern people think they can come to the province and remove wildlife and take it for their own personal use. »

Scott said the couples were apologetic and wanted the turtles as pets for themselves and friends.