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Indiana Officials Probe Why Pigeons Brought From Chicago To Indiana Farm

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has launched a criminal investigation into allegations pigeons have been scooped up in Chicago, and improperly transported to Indiana.

Ald. James Cappleman (46th) arranged for a farmer to use nets to capture dozens of pigeons in the Uptown neighborhood, in the 4700 block of North Broadway, then taken to a farm in Indiana.

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has said if the pigeons were taken to Indiana to be released or sold, it would be illegal without a permit. It would be legal, however, if they were brought to Indiana for personal use.

An animal rights group has questioned the farmer's motives in obtaining the pigeons.

Steve Hindi, founder and president of Showing Animals Respect and Kindness (SHARK) said he believes the pigeons were being captured "and being used in some type of shooting event."

SHARK is offering a $1,000 bounty for the name of the farmer who took the birds.

"We need to find out what's really going on here. Whatever it is, it's not good for the pigeons, and it almost certainly is illegal – probably in more than one state," Hindi said.

So far, Cappleman's office has refused to identify the farmer.

To contact SHARK about the reward, call 630-557-0176.

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