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Summit County: Wildlife managers seek info on moose kill

Colorado moose

A moose cow and calves grazing near Berthoud Pass, Colorado. bberwyn photo.

Failure to report an accidental kill can lead to fines, loss of license

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — State game managers are looking for information about the death of a bull moose near the Summit County shooting range and Frey Gulch Road. According to wildlife officials, the moose died from a gunshot wound and was not field dressed, leaving the meat to waste.

The moose was found during Colorado’s second rifle-hunting season but officials believe it was killed in early October, possibly during the first rifle season, Oct. 12 through 16.

Although details of the moose’s death are currently unknown, officials are investigating the incident as a possible mistaken or careless kill by an elk hunter.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife urges the public to provide any additional information that may lead to the person or persons responsible, including personal photos of any live bull moose seen in the area since early October.

“We understand that mistaken kills can happen while hunting, but we ask hunters to let us know right away,” said Summit County District Wildlife Manager Elissa Knox. “Killing an animal without a license, abandoning and wasting the meat and evading authorities can potentially lead to felony charges, substantial fines, prison time and a lifetime suspension of hunting privileges in Colorado as well as 38 other states.” Continue reading

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Colorado: Poaching investigation ends with convictions

Michigan men hit with fines, banned from Colorado for 5 years

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A Colorado elk herd. Photo courtesy Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Three Michigan men who poached elk, bear and bobcats in Colorado have been convicted and sentenced for their crimes after a long-running investigation by wildlife officials in both states.

In all, the investigation implicated eight men, including several from Colorado, who were engaged in systematic violations of game laws during illegal hunts that took place in the King Mountain area of southern Routt County in Colorado. Continue reading

Colorado: Meeker outfitter gets jail time for baiting game

Outfitter Dennis Eugene Rodebaugh sentenced to 41 months in prison for numerous wildlife violations

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A Colorado hunting will lose his business, go to jail and pay big fines for baiting deer and elk. Photo courtesy Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — In a classic tale of poacher versus game warden, a Meeker man apparently carried on a hunting business using illegal baiting to lure wildlife for his out-of-state clients, perhaps for as long as 20 years.

After other local residents tipped them off, state and federal agents launched an eight-year investigation that culminated last week, when U.S. District Court Judge Christine Arguello sentencing Dennis Eugene Rodebaugh, 72, owner of D & S Outfitters of Meeker, to 41 months in federal prison. He must also pay $37,390 in restitution to the state and forfeit two all-terrain vehicles and a trailer used in the commission of his crimes.

In September 2012, a federal jury in Denver found Rodebaugh guilty of six felony violations of the Lacey Act, a federal law that prohibits the transportation of illegally taken wildlife across state lines.

Baiting wildlife is illegal in Colorado and most of Rodebaugh’s clients were out-of-state hunters. As part of his sentence, Rodebaugh must also pay a $7500 fine that will go to the Lacey Act Reward Fund.

“This individual showed grievous disregard for wildlife laws, a considerable lack of ethics and he never expressed remorse,” said lead investigator Bailey Franklin, district wildlife manager in Meeker. “It took tremendous resources and man-hours to bring him to justice and we are very satisfied with the sentence.” Continue reading

Colorado game managers seek ‘malicious moose poacher’

Grand County killing described as an ‘egregious act’

A moose cow and two calves browse near the base of Berthoud Pass in this Aug. 2010 file photo.

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials say they are launching an all-out investigation to apprehend the person or persons responsible for killing a cow moose and her two calves in Grand County.

“This is an outrageous incident,” said Ron Velarde, northwest regional manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. “My officers are preparing an all-out effort to find the person or persons responsible and bring them to justice. At this point, we have no reason to believe this was an accident,” Velarde said. “The case is being investigated as a malicious poaching incident.” Continue reading

Colorado: Elk poacher hit with $11,500 fine

Grand County case solved with help from hunters

Bull elk, Rocky Mountain National Park. Photo courtesy Kim Fenske.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — A West Virginia man will pay an $11,500 fine for poaching Colorado wildlife. The fine includes a $10,000 penalty that applies when trophy-quality wildlife is poached — in this case a 6×6 bull elk taken on Devil’s Thumb Ranch property in Tabernash earlier this month.

David Lee Burner, 61, was cited for “hunting on private property without permission” and “illegal possession” of the elk after wildlife officers got a tip from another hunter.

“We first received a tip from a concerned hunter who witnessed a suspected trespassing incident in Devil’s Thumb Ranch,” said Lyle Sidener, area wildlife manager in Hot Sulphur Springs. “After the ranch owners found evidence of trespass on their property, they informed us and then assisted us in the investigation.” Continue reading

Colorado: Poachers nabbed at I-70 checkpoint

Elk near Bailey, Colorado. PHOTO COURTESY COLORADO DIVISION OF WILDLIFE/JCHURCHILL.

Most hunters in compliance with regs; wildlife officials plan more highway inspections

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY —Colorado wildlife officials who checked hunters on I-70 in November said they were pleased that most of the people contacted during the wildlife check were in compliance with state laws and hunting regulations.

About 300 hunters were interviewed during two-day operation at Loma, west of Grand Junction. Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers issues 22 citations for various infractions including illegal possession of wildlife and failing to provide evidence of the sex of their harvest. One driver is being investigated for being in possession of 78 white bass and two walleye. The source of the fish is still under investigation. Officers seized all illegally harvested wildlife. Continue reading

Summit County: Accidental moose killings increase

Wildlife managers seeking info on a hunter who have illegally killed a bull moose near Silverthorne in late October

Moose in Colorado

A moose cow and two calfs near Berthoud Pass, Colorado. PHOTO BY BOB BERWYN.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY —Accidental and illegal moose kills are on the rise in northwest Colorado, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers, who say they’ve investigated nine possible accidental moose kills, with seven of these incidents remaining unsolved to date.

In the latest incident, wildlife managers are asking the public for assistance in locating a hunter who may have illegally killed a bull moose near Silverthorne on Oct. 22.

Several people hiking along the Gore Range and Rock Creek/Pebble Creek Trail, about seven miles north of Silverthorne, reported that they encountered a hunter who told them he had shot a bull moose by mistake, but the individual has yet to report the incident to wildlife officers. Continue reading

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