Saturday, January 28th, 2023
Saturday, January 28th, 2023

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Pennsylvania Cuffs & Collars – August 31st, 2012

NORTHWEST REGION

•Butler County WCO Christopher J. Deal reports that a group of individuals unlawfully set up a shooting range at SGL 164 maintenance building. “Shooting clays were used and left in the wetlands ponds,” he said. “Glass bottles were shot, broken and left on the roadway. A host of other targets and debris were left on the ground, and other damage was discovered. If you or anyone knows the identity of the individuals involved, please report the information to the nearest regional office for further investigation.”
•Clarion County WCO Steven J. Ace picked up an injured great-horned owl recently.  “When I picked up the owl, it appeared to be starving, too weak to fly and had maggots everywhere inside its beak and sinus area,” he said. It was taken to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, where it reportedly is doing well. 
•Erie County Michael A. Girosky said machinery was vandalized on SGL 314. Anyone who may have seen suspicious activity around or near any of the equipment is encouraged to report it to the Game Commission at 814-432-3187 or the State Police at 814-774-9611.
•Mercer County Lawrence R. Hergenroeder filed several citations against those operating ATVs on property enrolled in the agency’s Hunter Access Program. “Signs are posted to warn the operators that the property is off limits to motor vehicles,” he said. “If apprehended those in violation could receive up to a $200 penalty.” 
•Venango County Ronda J. Bimber reports that illegal ATV activity is on the increase.
•Forest/Warren Counties LMGS Richard T. Cramer said summary trials were held for two recent violations of SGL regulations in Warren County. “One case involved an individual driving on a closed road, and the other involved a timber contractor violating contract provisions,” he said. In both cases a guilty verdict was rendered.

SOUTHWEST REGION

•Cambria County WCO Shawn Harshaw, while patrolling SGLs, has noticed increased ATV activity. “I have witnessed food plots planted with turnips and clover with ATV tracks in circles and erosion draining into native trout streams,” he said.
•Fayette County WCO Chris Bergman said two Fayette County men recently pleaded guilty to transporting, possessing and consuming alcohol on SGL 51 in Dunbar Township.
•Fayette County WCO Chris Bergman is investigating an incident that occurred in Franklin Township on a “red tag” farm. “The individual denied any wrongdoing upon the initial investigation, however, after further questioning, he confessed to shooting at a deer from the vehicle,” he said. Some of the charges include having a loaded firearm in a vehicle, shooting on or across highways, and using a motor vehicle to hunt. The individual is facing fines of up to $1,800.
•Somerset County WCO Brian Witherite said three antlerless white-tailed deer were killed in the Fairhope/Berlin area for no cause. “The deer were shot and left to rot in the fields,” he said. The poachers even drove through the farm fields running over each carcass. In one field, two deer were killed, one of which was a fawn. Anyone with information is asked to call the Southwest Region Office at 724-238-9523. The information will remain confidential.
•Somerset County WCO Wade Kramer reports on the fisher population in his district. “I recently spotted my seventh fisher while patrolling around my district in the year and half that I’ve been here,” he said. “Most of the sightings have been in the Mount Davis area of Forbes State Forest, but I have observed signs of them all across the district.”
•Westmoreland County WCO Brian Singer said a case stemming from the 2011 archery deer season has been recently finalized. “We used the Northeast Wildlife DNA lab for forensic analysis of evidence seized from the defendant’s residence,” he said. The results indicated that the defendant had taken several deer unlawfully during the season. In a plea agreement with the Westmoreland County District Attorney’s office, the defendant pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of unlawful taking of big game and one count of unlawful taking of game or wildlife. He was assessed fines totaling $3,400, plus court costs, and was ordered to pay $1,800 in restitution. He also was placed on probation for two years and faces the potential of losing his hunting privileges for up to 11 years.

NORTHCENTRAL REGION

•Elk County WCO Doty A. McDowell, during July, helped coordinate a multi-agency law enforcement mission to help curb illegal ATV use on lands open to public hunting. “Representatives from the Game Commission, State Police, Fish & Boat Commission, and Elk County Solid Waste all took part in the one-day event,” he said. “The event covered two counties and resulted in contact with 18 folks who were riding ATVs illegally.”
•Elk County WCO Doty A. McDowell prosecuted an individual who picked up a road-killed elk and kept the meat and antlers without notifying the Game Commission to get the proper permits. 
•Cameron County WCO Wayne A. Hunt captured and treated a bear with mange on SGL 14. “The bear was captured twice over a 14-day period which allowed the administering of the drug needed to cure the animal of its disease,” he said. “Subsequent photographs of the bear a month later show new hair growth in all of the afflicted areas. This bear should have a healthy coat of hair soon,” he said.
•Tioga County WCO Rodney Mee noted that the job of a WCO can be difficult. “Recently, I re-captured a male bear I had caught on Rattler Mountain in 2009,” he said. “The bear was 485 pounds and 12 years old in 2009. Though it had a large wound in its face from fighting, it still was a very healthy bear in 2009. This time, however, the bear was down to 270 pounds and could not walk on its rear legs due to a back injury. It was developing painful calluses on it elbows as well as mange. The bear was only 16 years old now, so it was likely injured in a bear fight or hit by a car and not likely due to age. Given the severity of its injuries and declining health, I was forced to make the difficult decision to euthanize the emaciated bruin.”
•Potter County WCO Mark S. Fair said a local district judge found a South Carolina man guilty of unlawfully killing a black bear in a baited area. “According to the defendant, baiting is a lawful practice in South Carolina,” he said.
•Tioga County WCO Rodney P. Mee investigated several poaching incidents in the Liberty Township area where the violators shot several deer and left them in the field to rot. “I’m pursuing several leads and hope to in time make successful prosecutions,” he said.

SOUTHCENTRAL REGION

•Bedford County WCO Chris Skipper is receiving an increasing number of complaints in regards to late spotlighting and shooting. “Residents are encouraged to report such incidents, as well as other violations, to their respective region offices,” he urged.
•Cumberland County WCO Tim Wenrich said small animal complaints continued to make up the majority of incidents handled in July. “A lot them consisted of injured birds, but others included fox, raccoons, and a coyote complaint,” he said.
•Cumberland County WCO Tim Wenrich is conducting active investigations from last year’s big game seasons. “Additionally, we are investigating the unlawful purchase of wildlife parts,” he said. “On-site violations are being handled on SGLs, including the shooting ranges. Several citations recently were filed on those issues.”
•Cumberland County WCO Tim Wenrich has several active arrest warrants to serve on individuals who have either not responded to charges or failed to pay the required penalty. “It would be in their best interest to do so before we conduct this detail,” he said.
•Fulton County WCO Kevin Mountz reports a lady from Needmore called to report that two bear cubs had taken up residence under her front porch in July. “The sow was most likely sacked out in the woods near her home and the two youngsters decided to explore their surroundings a bit,” he said. “They were gone the following day.”
•Mifflin County WCO Jeff Mock, so far this year, has trapped 22 bears between Mifflin and Juniata counties. “It looks like it is going to be a good year for the bear hunters,” he said.
•Snyder/Juniata Counties WCO Harold J. Malehorn reports bear complaints seem to be down this year, but the sightings of bears hasn’t gone down.
•York County WCO Kyle Jury reports a Wellsville man recently was found guilty of unlawful possession of white-tailed deer. “The charges arose from an incident that occurred during the 2011-12 regular firearms season in Warrington Township,” he said. “The case involved DNA evidence and expert testimony from Jane Huffman, from the East Stroudsburg University DNA Laboratory.”
•York County WCO Kyle Jury reports recent charges filed include drug and alcohol possession on state game lands and shooting range violations.

SOUTHEAST REGION

•Chester County WCO Keith Mullin banded 25 mourning doves as part of the annual banding program, which matched the number of bands received. “Hawk predation of doves in the traps was much less this year then in the previous two years,” he said.

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