Reward for swan egg suspect up to $3,000 and growing

The village has started to install a floating nesting platform after the attack on the swan eggs this weekend.

The village has started to install a floating nesting platform after the attack on the swan eggs this weekend. Photo by Amanda Seef.

— The attack on the swan eggs at Manlius’s Swan Pond is being called “brutal” and “unwarranted.”

That’s why several community members are working to create a reward fund for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for destroying several swan eggs over the weekend. The eggs would have been the first to hatch in eight years.

Two Manlius businesses and the village board have each allocated $1,000 for the reward fund, Mayor Mark-Paul Serafin said.

Earlier Monday, the owners of Bella Cigna restaurant, which means “beautiful swan” in Italian, brought forth $1,000 for a reward.

"It's the least we can do," said Rick DeCuffa, co-owner of the restaurant nestled near the Swan Pond. "Most of the community is just devastated by this. We're hoping the person can be brought to justice."

DeCuffa says he, like most in the village, were excited to see the cygnets in the pond. They were the first that would have hatched in the village in eight years

The village board voted Monday night to add $1,000, the most allowable by the village for a misdemeanor. Should the crimes escalate to a felony, which police said they could as the investigation continues, the reward could spring to $5,000 from the village alone.

The owners of Hollowick Candle, Jerry and Ann Menter, also pledged $1,000 to the reward fund at Monday's board meeting, Serafin said.

Serafin said a village resident has approached him about going door-to-door with her daughter to solicit funds for the reward.

"It's amazing the response,” Serafin said. “It has been absolutely, positively tremendous. The residents never fail to amaze me with their depth of support."

Police say the suspect removed the eggs sometime overnight Saturday or early Sunday morning. Seven of the eight eggs were destroyed. The eggs were taken from the nest and thrown or dropped near a wall outside Buffoon's Bar, at the corner of routes 92 and 173. The eighth was left near the nest and taken to an incubator by a swan expert but the embryo did not have a heartbeat.

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