Macomb Township man shot 3 hawks after utility company refused to cut down trees

Photo by: Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

A Macomb Township man has been ordered to pay $4,500 to reimburse the state and an additional $475 in fines after he shot three young Cooper's hawks out of a tree.

Arthur Anderson, 65, will also be on probation for six months and had his shotgun confiscated for the shootings. 

Anderson pleaded no contest in Shelby Township district court to shooting the birds. He shot them after a utility company he hired to cut down trees on his property refused to do so because they didn't want to disturb the animals.

According to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Anderson retrieved a shotgun from his house and fired at the nest five times. Three dead hawks then fell to the ground.

The incident was reported as part of an anonymous tip to the DNR's poaching division.

"The Michigan Department of Natural Resources greatly appreciates the court system’s support in this case," said Chief Dave Shaw. "All birds of prey are protected at both the state and federal level and are an important and enjoyable part of Michigan’s natural environment."

He was interviewed by officials with the DNR before they collected evidence. 

MORE: DNR's new system for reporting deer harvests a 'huge' step forward for tracking diseases

At first, Anderson said he was shooting at nuisance squirrels before eventually confessing to killing the birds. He said he was angry with his utility company.

Anderson was ordered to pay $1,500 per bird as part of a reimbursement to the state.