SALEM — A young elk, shot through the spine and left struggling with paralyzed hind legs, is one of three new poaching cases that mark a continued disregard for laws set in place to preserve Oregon wildlife. Poachers also shot a blacktail doe near Newport, and a cow elk near Yaquina Head.
Callers who leave information that leads to an arrest or citation in any of these cases can receive a $500 cash reward from Oregon Hunters Association or four ODFW hunter preference points.
On Oct. 29, a member of the public in rural Yamhill County contacted Oregon State Police to report seeing a spike elk that had lost use of its hind legs. A spike elk is a young male, usually about a year old. The elk was found on private property at the end of Dodson Road northwest of the city of Yamhill, in the Trask unit. At that time, there were no open bull elk seasons, although there were opportunities for cow elk.
Troopers responding to the call humanely killed the animal. They then followed procedure of donating meat from animals that have been killed illegally. The elk was slated to go to needy families through the Grand Ronde Tribe. During processing, meat cutters found a bullet. The young elk had been shot through the spine and, in a cruel twist, left to suffer. Anyone with information should reference case #SP21306128.
On Oct. 28, a member of the public contacted OSP Fish and Wildlife after seeing a dead deer about 150 yards north of Euchre Creek Road (aka Euchre Flats Road) in Newport. The reporting party first noticed the deer on Oct. 26. A sergeant responded to the area and located a blacktail doe that had been shot and left to waste. Anyone with information on this case should reference case #SP21304967. (Buck hunting seasons were open in western Oregon in late October. While there is not evidence to indicate who shot this doe, if it was a hunter that mistook it for a buck, they should have reported the incident to OSP and not left the animal to waste.)
On Oct. 21, a hunter reported an elk carcass he came across while hunting on Hancock Forest Property Management land east of Yaquina Head. Troopers located the carcass of a cow elk in a clear-cut off a spur road. Much of the meat had been removed. Troopers believe the animal had been shot the same day it was discovered and ask the public’s help in identifying a person of interest in this case. Anyone with information should reference case #SP21299105.
Rewards stand at $500 from the Oregon Hunters Association Turn In Poachers fund for information that leads to an arrest or citation in any poaching case. Reporting parties may opt for four hunter preference points from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife instead of cash. The rewards are intended as an incentive to increase the likelihood of people calling in when they have information related to crimes.
ODFW Stop Poaching campaign coordinator Yvonne Shaw believes this is a good program to have in place.
“Sometimes people aren’t sure if they should call in something suspicious,” Shaw said. “Other times they know about a crime, but they aren’t inclined to report it. The reward is an incentive.” People who call the tip line can remain anonymous and still collect a cash reward or hunter preference points.
The Stop Poaching Campaign educates the public on how to recognize and report poaching in collaboration among hunters, conservationists, landowners and recreationists. The campaign helps to protect and enhance Oregon’s fish and wildlife and their habitat for the enjoyment of present and future generations.
If you know of or suspect crimes against fish wildlife or habitat, authorities ask that you report it to the Turn In Poachers Line. 1-800-452-7888 or *OSP (*677) from a mobile phone. Or email: TIP@osp.oregon.gov between the hours of 8-5 Mon-Fri.