Pennsylvania Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – Sept. 14, 2018

From the Game Commission

• Crawford County Game Warden Mark Allegro responded to a report of a dead juvenile eagle in a secluded farm field the first week of August. Initial physical examination of the bird revealed no apparent injuries.  Additional tests are pending.

• Venango County Game Warden Jason R. Amory filed multiple citations for unlawful activity on state game lands. Amory said game lands parking areas he patrols too often are vandalized, littered upon or frequented by drug-users who discard paraphernalia there, and catching violators is a point of emphasis. Fines and costs for such offenses typically are in the $200 to $500 range.  

• Mercer County Game Warden Donald Chaybin reports talking to a crow hunter whose four-hunter group had taken 136 crows the previous weekend while hunting several farms in the area. 

• Mercer County Game Warden Donald Chaybin said a black bear was killed on Interstate 79 southbound near the 125-mile marker the morning of July 28. The carcass was highly visible on the berm and generated lots of phone calls to both the Game Commission and state police. Before he arrived to remove the approximately 250-pound male bear from the highway, however, someone sawed off its head and paws. Anyone with information about this unlawful act is asked to call the region office at 814-432-3187.

• Jefferson County Game Warden Roger Hartless reports he has received more bear complaints this year than any in of the past 25. Weather permitting, bear hunters in Jefferson County stand an excellent chance of filling their bear tag this year. Pre-season scouting is important, and hunters shouldn’t overlook huntable land near residential areas with thick cover.

• Forest County Game Warden Frank Leichtenberger is investigating reports of people operating ATVs and dirt bikes on State Game Land 24 and nearby property enrolled in the Hunter Access Program. Anyone with information is asked to call the region office.

• Jefferson County Game Warden Andrew D. Troutman reports that violations on co-op properties are on the rise. ATVs, littering and camping are among the common violations.

From the Game Commission

• Union County Game Warden Dirk Remensnyder reports trapping a bear that was close to 500 pounds. By hunting season, this bear could possibly weigh about  700 pounds.

• Lycoming County Game Warden Kristoffer Krebs picked up a bald eagle at the County Farm in Montoursville. The eagle was found dead in a field, clutching a woodchuck. The carcass will be examined to try to determine the cause of death, which wasn’t apparent.

• Elk County Game Warden Susan Edmiston reports that, on a recent evening patrol, two individuals were found unlawfully camping on State Game Land 28, along Spring Creek. The couple was cited for camping and warned for consuming alcoholic beverages and making a campfire on game lands. They were told to clean up and vacate the site in the morning since they had been drinking.

• Elk County Game Warden Susan Edmiston is investigating the killing of an approximately 400-pound black bear that was shot in the German Settlement area of Horton Township on or about June 13. The bear had a bullet wound just behind the right shoulder. No bullet was recovered from the carcass. Anyone with information about the bear shooting is asked to call the region office at 570-398-4744.

• McKean and Potter counties Game Warden Skyler Gibble reports that an individual from the Otto-Eldred area was cited for setting a Conibear trap outside of a water course and for setting or staking traps during a closed season.

• Centre County Game Warden Michael Ondik reports that an individual recently was cited for purposely taking a raccoon pup from the wild and keeping it in her possession. Because she had been bitten and scratched by the raccoon, it needed to be destroyed so it could be tested for rabies. Charges are still pending, but could result in fines and costs of over $300.

• Tioga County Game Warden Rob Minnich reports presenting to awards on behalf of the Game Commission at the 2018 NRA YHEC National event. Monty Embrey, who manages the YHEC state and local recreational programs and ranges for the NRA, has worked for 20 years to promote hunting and shooting sports, and provide informational programs throughout the U.S. Meanwhile, Bob Davis, who is the national manager of the NRA’s Outdoor Recreational Programs Department’s Recreational Programs and Ranges Division, has worked for 33 years doing much the same thing.  

• Clinton County Game Warden Kirk Miller reports that an individual recently pleaded guilty to unlawfully killing a cottontail rabbit during the closed season.

• McKean County Game Warden Jeffrey Orwig reports that the local food and cover crews are planting food plots for the fall. Check your local state game lands for these areas. 

• Potter County Game Warden Mark Fair reports capturing a three-legged bear. The young 117-pound male was completely healed and in excellent health, agile as any four-legged bear.

• Land Manager Eric Erdman reports that a new archery range soon will built at the Scotia Range Complex on State Game Land 176 in Centre County. It will be located at the current site of the combat range, which once hosted statewide marksmanship competitions for game wardens. More recently, the range has been underutilized, mainly because it has no established shooting stations and only could be used by the public through a special permit priced at $250 per day. The new archery range will better serve shooters wishing to practice and refine their archery skills.      

• Lycoming County Game Warden Harold Cole reports an increasing number of bear mange reports this year. Mange seems to have spread to a couple of more townships. Cole said he’s heard of some incidents where dogs have gotten mange and even one case where a person contracted it. Cole advises helping to fight the spread of mange by removing any possible wildlife food sources such as corn, doughnuts, food scraps thrown outside, birdfeeders, garbage cans (put food that will rot in the freezer and take out when you take your garbage out in the morning), compost piles, grills, pet food, water dishes. These food sources congregate bears increasing the chances mange will spread among them.

• Clearfield County Game Warden Mark Gritzer reports that a turkey hunter was found guilty at trial for killing a turkey from a motorized vehicle, receiving a $1,000 fine with the possible loss of hunting privileges.

• Clearfield County Game Warden Mark Gritzer reports that a person was found guilty at a summary appeal hearing within the Court of Common Pleas for assisting and conspiring to possess an illegal deer during a closed season.

• Lycoming County Game Warden Jonathan M. Wyant reports crop kills are sharply up in Lycoming County. “I have already picked up over 30 crop kills just this year,” Wyant said. “Hunters need to seek out folks engaged in agriculture for new opportunities to hunt.”

From the Game Commission

• Cumberland County Game Warden Timothy L. Wenrich recently filed citations for permit violations and state game lands pertaining to unlawful use of a shooting range and trails. He is also investigating unlawful dumping activity on State Game Land 230.  

• Snyder County Game Warden Harold J. Malehorn filed a citation against an individual for taking an opossum from the wild and possessing it as a pet.

• Snyder County Game Warden Harold J. Malehorn is investigating a case where a deer was shot at night and left in the field.  Multiple other game law violations were committed as well. This incident happened in the Oakland Mills area of Juniata County. 

• Perry County Game Warden Steven Brussese reports that a Delaware man has pleaded guilty to charges filed for unlawfully purchasing a resident hunting license. Because his license was invalid, his subsequent killing of an antlerless deer also resulted in charges being filed and a guilty plea being entered.  

• Bedford County Game Warden Brandon Pfister reports a Roaring Spring man has been charged for unlawfully killing a groundhog.  

• Mifflin County Game Warden Amanda M. Isett confiscated two illegal sugar gliders from that were abandoned by the owner.  

From the Game Commission

• Berks County Game Warden Tom Kline reports that multiple violations continue to be prosecuted for the possession/consumption of alcoholic beverages and the possession of controlled substances and/or paraphernalia on State Game Land 425 and State Game Land 280 at Blue Marsh Lake. All defendants have pleaded guilty to fines reaching almost $300 each. 

• Schuylkill County Game Warden Jason Macunas reports a Pine Grove man was found in possession of a white-tailed fawn. He found the deer along the road and kept it at his residence for approximately two months, where he bottle-fed it. The deer became acclimated to humans and was taken to a local wildlife rehabilitator for observation, but it was too habituated to humans to be released back into the wild. Criminal charges for possessing the fawn are pending.    

• Montgomery County Game Warden Ray Madden reports that, over the past month, multiple court cases have been adjudicated. These cases ranged from individuals drinking on game lands, to multiple counts of poaching. 

• Montgomery County Game Warden Ray Madden reports that, while driving on State Game Land 234 he observed a car parked in an area that cars usually do not park. Multiple people were having an afternoon drinking party in the woods and charged with narcotics, alcohol, and littering violations.

• Montgomery County Game Warden Ray Madden reports receiving multiple complaints of individuals purchasing a license without having first taken Hunter-Trapper Education. 

• Lebanon County Game Warden Brian Sheetz recently found a person misusing State Game Land 211 on Box Car Rocks. Charges were filed for possessing drugs and paraphernalia, misuse of game lands and disorderly conduct.

• Lebanon County Game Warden Brian Sheetz reports two individuals who spray-painted numerous rocks on State Game Land 156 were charged with damaging property and failing to obey signs. 

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