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Game Warden Field Notes
The following are excerpts from recent Texas Parks and Wildlife Department law enforcement reports.
Frustrated captain catches extra citation — On April 1, game wardens from Harris and Galveston Counties worked between the Galveston jetties and Galveston Bay looking for fishing violations. Several citations were issued, including two citations issued to oyster boats for having undersized catch. After returning his oysters to the reef, one captain began venting his frustration by throwing plastic jugs and burlap oyster sacks overboard as well. The wardens re-boarded the boat and cited the captain for littering.
A ‘campful’ of violations — An Irion County game warden was checking turkey hunters April 1 when he located a camp containing several violations but no hunters. Before anyone returned, a Tom Green County warden was called in for assistance, and when the hunters got back to camp, they were greeted with 15 citations and 15 warning citations.
Warden wins bid on frozen animals — A Coleman County game warden got a call in early April about someone selling a frozen bobcat and grey fox on eBay. The game warden registered on eBay and sent a few messages to the seller. The seller replied gave the warden his name and phone number. A brief meeting revealed the seller had a valid hunting license but no trapper’s license.
Complacent campers get caught — On March 15, a Young County game warden received a call regarding suspicious individuals on the Brazos River. Wildcatter Ranch owners were giving paid tours of the Brazos and offered to escort the warden for free on their airboat. A few miles down river, two individuals and a jon boat were located near a cave. The subjects, apparently camping on the river, assumed the airboat was just conducting another tour. They failed to realize that the “tourist” was a game warden. When approached, illegal drugs were still in plain sight.
Bothersome hog no match for game warden — A Goliad County game warden responded to a call from a residential area mid-March. A wild hog had been rooting up small trees, flowers, plants, and fighting with neighborhood pets. The warden successfully tracked down the feral hog, and after a little wrestling, captured and relocated it to a ranch in Goliad County.
Make sure someone knows you’re gone — A Lamar County game warden received a call March 11 concerning a group of hunters who had not returned home. The caller was worried the hunters would get caught in an impending storm. The warden located the subjects unharmed. Their truck had gotten stuck in the mud, and their cell phone was dead. By the time the tow truck arrived, it had to pull the vehicle out several times until reaching the end of the very muddy road.
Shallow water isn’t for speeding — A McLennan County game warden and a Coryell County game warden were called to investigate a boating accident on Lake Waco March 2. Two men were operating their bass boat at a high rate of speed in a shallow, stumpy part of the lake. Inevitably, they struck a log and the boat overturned. One passenger was ejected from the boat, but both occupants escaped without any serious injuries.
Lucky boaters get water safety reminder — A Hood County game warden was contacted in late February by the county sheriff’s office about a boat on Lake Granbury that was in danger of capsizing in nearly 60 mph winds. The warden and a Brazos River Authority lake ranger responded to assist. The officers found four teenagers in a 12-foot Jon boat with only paddles as well as a man and two small children in a paddleboat. Everyone was returned safely to shore, where they received a water safety lesson from the warden.
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