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Game Warden Field Notes

 

Texas Parks and Wildlife law enforcement compiles the following items from recent 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 crop, 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 issued citations for Hunting from a Motor Vehicle.

Pepper Your Neighbor, Get Peppered With Citations

On the 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, pellets showered him from the hunter that the property owner described. 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 the 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. The game warden issued citations to the hunters and the 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 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, the game warden located a large amount of milo, scratch, and corn about 20 yards away. He also found a feeder full of scratch in the same area. The landowner admitted this feeder had been running until two days before 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. The cases are 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 for possible damage, the game warden found it did not have a TX # assigned. He 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 that were displaying dealer tags. As it turned out, a total of 13 additional rental boats were not titled or registered correctly. The game warden took appropriate enforcement action. 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 saw 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 vehicle acknowledged possessing the quail, and the warden cited him for possessing freshly killed bobwhite quail during a 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 worked multiple contacts throughout the weekend and discovered several violations. They include over the daily bag limit of a dove, unplugged shotgun, no hunting license, no hunter safety certification, no migratory endorsement, and the possession of a threatened nongame species. The officers seized one jackrabbit, one Texas indigo snake, and over 80 doves during the weekend. Restitution and the cases are pending.