[CT Birds] family shooting bb guns in smith richardson preserve

Tina and Peter Green petermgreen at hotmail.com
Sun Jan 1 18:38:10 EST 2012

Thanks for making us aware of this incident. Smith Richardson Preserve is one of my usual morning stops and I'm very troubled that someone would be there with any type of gun. I would not hesitate to call the police. Is it under the Westport PD's jurisdiction? I can't believe it's legal to shoot even a BB gun anywhere except maybe on your own property if it's large enough,and even then,there are probably restrictions. 
Tina Green


> From: Leslie.Meredith at simonandschuster.com
> To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org
> Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2012 18:15:02 -0500
> Subject: [CT Birds] family shooting bb guns in smith richardson preserve
> Passing by Smith Richardson today at 445 I thought I'd try for some last species of the day after a great morning at Greenwich Point and a distant sighting of the Snowy Owl from Short Beach. One other car was there so I hoped another birder was onto something. First went for bluebirds in the field across from the Xmas trees without success. Next went into the Xmas tree farm and heard odd noises, but wasnt close enough to tell what was going on; saw a kid and an adult in the middle of the trees up the main path as I was going over by the wall where the sparrows (one song sparrow stirring). When I retraced my steps, the car had been moved across the street and a family of four, 2 young sons, was inside the preserve to the left of the gate. With my bins i could see that all four had bb guns that they were firing. As I crossed the street, the man left the group and met me just outside the gate, as I asked, "Are you shooting birds?!" He made a dismissive face and said, No, we're shooting trees. We're not shooting birds. I turned to leave, took their license plate, went down to Southport beach (mallards, swans, great blue heron) came home, called the Westport police. At first Westport said it wasnt their jurisdiction and referred me to Fairfield who, after telling me it isn't illegal to shoot trees, referred me back to Westport. An officer has just visited to take my complaint.
> BB or not BB, isn't it obvious that no one should be shooting in a nature preserve?
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