Eight cases of poaching reported in southwest Colorado

Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) officials are investigating eight suspected cases of poaching in San Miguel County near Norwood, Colorado. All cases occurred within Game Management Unit 70 and involved three mule deer, three bull deer and two cow deer. Three of the incidents occurred in the Dry Creek watershed, two in the Dan Noble State Wildlife Area and three in the Callan Draw area.

“All these animals were found shot and left in the garbage. This is a flagrant violation of Colorado laws surrounding hunting and fishing, which require hunters to prepare game meat for human consumption,” CPW Area Wildlife Manager Rachel Sralla said in a news release.

The incidents are believed to have taken place between October 30 and November 15. It is not clear how many poachers were involved, or whether the cases are related. Southwest Colorado is considered a hot spot for deer and mule deer hunting.

“In any activity that people enjoy, most of the time things go well and the participants behave in an appropriate legal, moral and ethical manner,” said Mark Caddy, CPW Wildlife District manager. “Sometimes, however, there are one or two people who show up and act in a way that no one inside or outside the business can accept. Apparently, these types of individuals appeared in GMU 70 during the last hunting seasons.”

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The fallow deer was left to perish in the Callan Draw area. CPW

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CPW officials collected evidence at the scenes of the suspected poaching incidents and are currently investigating them. They are asking for the public’s help in solving them and for anyone with relevant information about any of the incidents to contact them. CPW accepts anonymous tips through Operation Game Thief, which pays rewards of up to $1,000 to citizens who turn in poachers.

“The initial information about each animal in these cases came from hunters in the field who took the time to call and report that something was going on,” Caddy said. “These ethical hunters are just as concerned about this happening as we are.”

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