Ohio Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – July 2, 2021

Division of Wildlife

Central Ohio – Wildlife District 1 

During the 2020 white-tailed deer archery hunting season, state wildlife officer Maurice Irish, assigned to Delaware County, received a TIP call through the 1-800-POACHER (1-800-762-2437) line regarding a man who reportedly hunted deer without a valid hunting license or deer permit. It was provided that the man had killed a deer, then bought his hunting license and deer permit afterward. When officer Irish contacted the man, he first denied it. After further investigation, it was revealed that the man had killed two deer during the season without having a valid hunting license or deer permit. He failed to game check the first deer and butchered it in his barn. Officer Irish issued several summonses to the man. He was ordered to pay $564 in fines and restitution and lost his hunting privileges for one year. If you suspect illegal poaching activity, please contact 1-800-POACHER (1-800-762-2437) to report wildlife violations.

During the spring, state wildlife officer Tyler Eldred, assigned to Morrow County, received a phone call regarding a raccoon kit that was discovered during the morning hours alone in the caller’s yard. The caller was concerned that the kit had been orphaned. After discussing options, it was decided instead of immediately taking it to a rehabilitation center that the kit would be placed under a nearby bush. The caller kept an eye on the small raccoon while it slept throughout the day with a wireless security camera. Soon after, the raccoon mother was observed exiting the nearby woods and proceeded directly to the kit, where it picked it up by the scruff of its neck and carried it off back into the wild. The Ohio Division of Wildlife encourages everyone to leave wildlife in the wild. Wildlife parents are very devoted to their young and rarely abandon them. Visit wildohio.gov for more information about interacting with orphaned or injured wildlife.

Northwest Ohio – Wildlife District 2

In March, a fire broke out at a recycling center in Sandusky County. The fire was close to Resthaven Wildlife Area and smoke from the fire was quickly blowing into and around several houses nearby. State wildlife officers Michele Butler, assigned to Erie County, and Matt D. Smith, assigned to Huron County, were called to help assist the local sheriff and fire departments with evacuations and prevent the public from getting near the fire. Office Butler, who was close to the area when the call came in, arrived and immediately started helping the Erie County Sheriff’s Office to evacuate people and pets from nearby houses, and block traffic. Officer Smith arrived shortly after and also helped to reroute traffic to avoid the bulk of the smoke as it blew over the roadway. Both officers were on scene for more than four hours as fire crews worked to contain and put out the fire.

In May, a Turn In a Poacher (TIP) call was received at 1-800-POACHER (1-800-762-2437) about a person shooting Canada geese during the closed season. State wildlife officer Mike Ohlrich, assigned to Lucas County, was nearby at the time and responded to the call. Thanks to the information from the caller, officer Ohlrich located the suspect and found six dead geese in the bed of his truck. A summons was issued for unlawfully taking Canada geese during the closed season.

Northeast Ohio – Wildlife District 3

State wildlife officer Randy White, assigned to Lorain County, responded to a call from a concerned homeowner who woke up to find two white-tailed buck deer with their antlers stuck together in the backyard. Officer White arrived on scene and discovered the bucks had become tangled in a long piece of rope, which later became tangled in the brush. Using a knife taped to a pole, officer White cut through the rope and freed the bucks. The bucks appeared unharmed from the incident and were no worse for the wear other than carrying some rope in their antlers. The rope was likely shed along with the antlers a few months later.

While on patrol during the 2021 white-tailed deer muzzleloader hunting season, state wildlife officer Tom Frank, assigned to Mahoning County, encountered a group of six off-road vehicles, which were damaging multiple properties. There were multiple complaints of this same group of drivers causing significant damage to private land. Officer Frank contacted the landowners as well as the local police jurisdiction. The next day, officer Frank continued to assist with the effort by photographing property damage and providing local law enforcement with contact information for the owners of the vehicles. Wildlife officers are often the ears and eyes for absentee landowners. If you are experiencing trespassing related to wildlife pursuits, call 1-800-POACHER (1-800-762-2437) or contact your county wildlife officer directly. Contact your local law enforcement agency for other trespass concerns.

Southeast Ohio – Wildlife District 4

Between October 2020 and March 2021, state wildlife officer Brad St. Clair was notified of six illegal trash dumps in Noble County. The trash at the sites included construction materials, tires, boats, televisions, furniture, power tools, diapers, and miscellaneous household items. Wildlife officers identified and issued summonses to seven individuals who were responsible for dumping the trash. The individuals appeared in the Noble County Court and were all found guilty of the violations. They were ordered to pay a combined $1,903 in fines and court costs. Four of the individuals were ordered to serve a combined total of 14 days in the Noble County Jail. The seven individuals were ordered to pick up and properly dispose of the trash they dumped at the sites.

Southwest Ohio – Wildlife District 5

Wildlife Officer Jasmine Grossnickle, assigned to Miami County, in partnership with Brukner Nature Center, annually provides training and assistance to wildlife partners in the community to assist in receiving and handling injured, orphaned, and nuisance wildlife calls. This year’s event was a virtual event where people from throughout the state could listen in to learn about life history and orphaned wildlife calls from Becky Crow, curator at Brukner Nature Center. Officer Grossnickle provided additional information to help the wildlife community understand the legal aspects of calls involving wildlife. Through this partnership, training is provided to numerous park districts, veterinary offices, nuisance animal control operators, and others in the wildlife community to help serve the communities in the region while also helping our native wildlife.

Following the 2020-21 white-tailed deer hunting season, state wildlife officer Matt Hunt investigated a deer harvest in Greene County. A hunter appeared to have harvested a deer prior to purchasing his deer permit. This person was familiar to officer Hunt because he had been warned in the past about other activities. Officer Hunt knew that this hunter participated in a lottery hunting program with a local metro park. An investigation showed that the person had hunted at least a dozen times before he purchased a deer permit. The hunter was contacted, and he admitted to not having the proper permits. The violator was issued one citation and paid more than $350 in fines and court costs.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *