SMUGGLING: Polly Wants A Crackdown

Polly Wants A Crackdown

The sting was called Operation Psittacine, from the Latin name of the brightly plumed contraband. Last week the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said that 36 people in six states would be indicted on felony charges for their role in smuggling rare and endangered parrots into the U.S. from Mexico and other Latin American countries. In a two-year undercover probe, the agency seized dozens of exotic parrots worth some $468,000. Such birds, which can be picked up for as little as $100 apiece along the Mexican border, fetch dear prices in U.S. pet stores: $4,500 for a scarlet macaw, $25,000 for...

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