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Game Warden Field Notes

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Note: This item is more than two months old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references.

The following items are compiled from recent Texas Parks and Wildlife law enforcement reports.

Riding Shotgun

An Abilene district game warden was patrolling in Throckmorton County when he observed a utility vehicle (UTV) driving through the center of a failed wheat field. Upon entering the field, the warden saw two individuals on the UTV. One of the individuals was sitting on a cooler on the front of the UTV holding a shotgun. The warden observed the two hunters driving through the field and shooting at birds that were flushed up by the UTV. The warden made contact with the UTV and citations were issued for Hunting from a Motor Vehicle.

Pepper Your Neighbor, Get Peppered With Citations

On opening day of dove season during the evening hunt, a Williamson County game warden received a complaint in the Jarrell area. The complainant said a hunter was shooting across the property line and peppering their house.  When the game warden arrived on scene, he was received with pellets from the hunter they were complaining about.  Two game wardens jumped the fence and found the hunter, along with 30 other hunters, some found to be missing a plug, have no hunter education, no hunting license, shooting across property line and hunting over a baited field.  Game wardens spoke to the landowner who was hunting and after a short interview, he admitted he placed bait to attract the birds.  Citations were issued to the hunters and landowner.

The Old Bait-and-Ditch

While patrolling Duval County during the South Zone season opener, game wardens contacted a landowner who said his hunters had shot 110 doves over the course of two days. The landowner became very nervous when asked to identify the location where the hunt took place. The landowner identified a caliche pit as the location of the hunt and said the hunters were already on their way back to Houston. After searching the caliche pit, large amounts of milo, scratch, and corn were located about 20 yards away.  A feeder full of scratch and milo was also located in the same area. The landowner admitted this feeder had been running until two days prior to opening day. A game warden in Harris County was contacted and interviewed two of the hunters resulting in the seizure of 63 birds. The remaining 47 birds were returned to the game warden by the landowner. Civil restitution and multiple citations for Hunting Migratory Game Birds over Bait and Placing Bait to Attract Migratory Birds are pending.

Blamed The BB Gun Totin’ Kids

Maverick County game wardens observed a group of dove hunters taking pictures of their doves at a roadside park. They stopped to check the doves and found the group to be 60 doves over their limit for the weekend. The group’s explained that the two young boys with the group also shot a limit each day. After a brief conversation, the group finally admitted the boys only had a BB gun and didn’t shoot 60 birds. Cases pending.

Not Registered to Boat

A Comal County game warden was following up on a boating accident which occurred on Canyon Lake involving a private boat owner and the operator of a rental boat.  While inspecting the rental boat for possible damage, the game warden found it did not have a TX # assigned to it.  It was then discovered that the rental company had acquired the boat some time ago and had been renting it throughout the summer under a temporary dealer tag.  The game warden then inquired about numerous other rental boats which were displaying dealer tags.  As it turned out a total of 13 additional rental boats were not titled or registered properly.  Appropriate enforcement action was taken.  The resulting boat registration transactions exceeded $25,000 in sales tax paid and $3,300 paid in late fees and interest.

Epic Quail Fail

An Atascosa County game warden responded to a call about hunters that were pelleting a house on an adjacent piece of property.  While walking up to the hunters, the game warden noticed a pile of bird feathers. Upon further examination, he noticed five quail carcasses and numerous dead mourning doves.  There were about twenty hunters, and of those twenty, no one would admit to having killed the quail. The game warden inspected a cooler in the bed of a truck and found the quail breasts.  The owner of the truck acknowledged possessing the quail and was cited for possessing freshly killed bob white quail during closed season.

A Wardens Work is Never Done

During the opening weekend of general dove season, Willacy County game wardens patrolled the county enforcing Texas hunting regulations.  Game wardens made multiple contacts throughout the weekend and several violations were discovered which included: over the daily bag limit of dove, unplugged shotgun, no hunting license, no hunter safety certification, no migratory endorsement and the possession of a threatened nongame species. One jack rabbit, one Texas indigo snake and over 80 doves were seized during the weekend. Restitution and cases pending.