Game Law Violations

Hunters have long used wildlife decoys in pursuit of game. Wildlife officers are also using decoys now. But in pursuit of poachers.

Reports from Wyoming Game & Fish

• It was late October when a deer decoy was set up in an area that had closed for the season. Of the 32 vehicles passing the decoy during the 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. surveillance, 17 stopped to look at the dummy. Eight of those vehicles, or 25 percent of the traffic, stopped and shot what they thought was a live, breathing mule deer buck.

• In a different location, a deer decoy was set up during six daylight hours, and nine vehicles stopped to observe the decoy. Four hunters left their vehicle, got off the road and attempted to take the deer legally. But three other hunters were cited for shooting from the road and fined $200 each.

• In just six hours from late morning through afternoon, an elk decoy had officers writing 21 citations and several warning tickets to persons shooting the decoy set up along Wyoming Highway 70 east of Baggs. In addition to the obvious violations of shooting from a public road and a vehicle and not wearing fluorescent orange, the officers discovered a nonresident who lied to obtain a resident elk license.

• A bizarre yet memorable violation. One guy was so focused on the decoy, he pulled up and shot it from the highway as a warden, standing next to his green G&F truck on the shoulder, was issuing a ticket to another violator.

Even though the vast majority of hunters conduct themselves ethically and abide by the laws, those who do not continue to perpetuate a negative image for hunters and hunting.

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