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Game Warden Stories: 40 Deer Poached, Drunk Hunting, Not Telling the Truth

These field reports from across the country range from the serious to the ridiculous.

Game Warden Stories: 40 Deer Poached, Drunk Hunting, Not Telling the Truth

173 OVER LIMIT: Texas game wardens filed multiple charges after two men were found with 173 crappie over the limit at Lake 'O the Pines. The wardens received a tip about a large amount of crappie being cleaned and dumped at the lake. In all, 350 crappie fillets were seized and donated to needy families in the area. (Texas Game Wardens Facebook)

Wildlife officers, whether they're called conservation officers, rangers or game wardens, face a myriad of incidents when in the field.

40 Deer Reportedly Poached

Wisconsin conservation wardens are investigating the reported poachings of around 40 deer this fall in Clark County.

News reports say a group of teenagers could be responsible.

Spokesperson Lt. Robin Barnhardt said between six and eight juveniles could face charges. "During the course of that investigation the Wardens contacted students at several high schools and several communities in Clark County," Barnhardt told WOAW-TV in Wausau. "[They] made the determination that several groups of juveniles had been involved in these activities at night for several weeks. These juveniles were going out, spotlighting deer, shooting them with firearms and just leaving them to rot in the field.”


A horse also was reportedly killed.


The teens could face at least two Class A misdemeanor charges — hunting with a light at night and hunting outside of the designated deer gun season. Charges are possible after wardens complete case reports.

"This is not hunting … this is wanton and random killing," Barnhardt told the TV station.

Read more here

Liar Liar Deer on Fire

An Upshur County, Texas, game warden received a call about two deer carcasses dumped along a shared fence line with a neighbor. The caller said the two carcasses had not been quartered and only some of the meat had been taken off of the two deer. When wardens arrived at the property, the two deer were no longer on the fence line.


The wardens interviewed the property owner, but he denied knowledge of the two deer. After a quick investigation, it was determined that a nine-point buck was harvested that morning by his juvenile son. When asked about the carcass, the landowner said they had taken the carcass to a creek a mile away to dispose of it.

When questioned about the second deer, the landowner continued to deny claims of there being another deer. After further questioning, the landowner confessed to not harvesting all of the meat from the nine-point buck that morning and showed the wardens to a burn pile on the property where they found the wasted buck with its two front shoulders intact and on fire. The landowner continued to deny there had been another deer until one of the wardens found a partially quartered doe hidden in the high brush. The landowner then confessed. Multiple cases are pending.

Read more Texas Game Warden Field Notes


Drunk and on the Hunt

Also in Texas, game wardens saw a vehicle stop twice near a large pasture and stick what they thought was a rifle out of the window. While following the vehicle to confirm what they had seen, the driver was driving erratically on the county road. When the vehicle stopped again, the warden conducted a traffic stop. The warden then approached the vehicle and saw an AR-15 rifle in the passenger’s seat. The weapon was secured, and the driver was checked for warrants. The warden noticed the thermal scope was still on, so they asked the driver about hunting and told him that they had seen him stick the rifle out of the window. The driver then admitted to hunting the field for hog and admitted to being intoxicated. The driver was arrested and charged with hunting without landowner consent and hunting non-game from a motor vehicle.

Elk, Buck Reported Poached

Utah conservation officers are investigating reports of poached elk and deer from mid-October. The elk was left to waste near North Creek Road sometime between Oct. 15–17. Only the head, hide and entrails were removed from the animal. A buck deer was reported left to waste in the Bald Hills south of Beaver City on Oct. 17. The antlers and backstraps were removed, but the rest of the meat had been left to waste.

If you have any info on these cases, call the UTiP Hotline at 800-662-3337, or DWR Officer Jeremy Butler at 435-310-0238. Rewards are available, and requests for confidentiality are respected.

Read more here

You Can't Cross the Line

New York officers investigated a resident hunter who had shared details on social media about a buck he harvested in Connecticut. The hunter was informed that due to state Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) regulations, he could not transport the deer across the state line. The animal was seized.

Read more Environmental Conservation Police Officer Highlights

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