Pennsylvania Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – September 30, 2022

SOUTHWEST REGION
From the Game Commission

Allegheny County Game Warden Douglas Bergman reports an individual from Liberty Borough was given a warning for unlawfully trapping nuisance wildlife. 

Allegheny County Game Warden Madison Pugh reports a traffic stop of a driver suspected of driving under the influence ended in charges filed.

Armstrong County Game Warden Denton Schellhammer reports charges have been filed against three people who rode ATVs on State Game Land 287.

Beaver County Game Warden Matt Kramer reminds hunters that any area where bait had been placed must be cleaned up of all bait and residue (including minerals that might have seeped into the soil) at least 30 days prior to hunting in that area. Hunters are responsible for ensuring an area has not been baited prior to hunting.

Cambria County Game Warden April Whitsell advises residents to mitigate conflicts with the bear population by limiting bears’ exposure to garbage and birdfeeders.

Fayette County Game Warden Bradley Hyde reports that, during a detail on the border of Washington and Greene counties, about 20 ATVs and side-by-sides were found riding on either Hunter Access property and state game lands. Some riders were cited.

Greene County Game Warden Brandon Bonin reports an individual was cited for driving in areas posted closed to motorized vehicles on State Game Land 51.

Greene County Game Warden Brandon Bonin reports taking an injured red-tailed hawk to the Avian Conservancy Center of Appalachia for rehabilitation.

Somerset County Game Warden Brian Witherite reports on dove hunting in managed fields on State Game Land 82. Hunters from West Virginia and Maryland were there, along with Pennsylvanians, and all parties were pleased with the agency’s efforts in promoting this hunting opportunity.

Somerset County Game Warden Brian Witherite reports that, in recent weeks, several nuisance bears have been relocated from cornfields.

Somerset County LMGS Travis Anderson cited several individuals for illegally operating vehicles on state game lands and is investigating several other incidents where charges will be filed.

Somerset County LMGS Travis Anderson reports that, with cooperation from the Somerset Rural Electric Cooperative, the Somerset County habitat crew erected over 300 feet of mock utility line on State Game Land 82 to serve as a perch for doves near the managed dove fields. 

Washington County Game Warden Dan Sitler reports resolution to a case where a small game hunter, who could not lawfully possess firearms, was found in possession of illegal drugs. The individual is now serving a year in the county jail.

Westmoreland County Game Warden Chris Bergman reports multiple charges are being filed for unlawful operation of off-road 4×4 trucks on State Game Land 296.

Westmoreland County Game Warden Chris Bergman reports charges are being filed against an individual for transporting a road-killed deer out of Chronic Wasting Disease Management Area 3.

Westmoreland County Game Warden Shawn Greevy issued a warning to an individual who was having a campfire on the bank of Indian Creek, on land enrolled in the Hunter Access Program. The individual was very compliant and put the fire out when asked.

NORTHCENTRAL REGION
From the Game Commission

Lycoming County Game Warden Andrew Butler reports that, while on patrol, he saw a mother grouse with four young crossing the road.

Clearfield County Game Warden Thomas Henry reports he had a call about a deer with a fishing lure in its mouth. “I guess fish aren’t the only thing you can catch with a fishing rod,” he said.

McKean County Game Warden Justin Slomian reports unlawful ATV activity on Hunter Access properties owned by timber companies in the county. 

Lycoming County Game Warden Harold Cole reports a man he cited for shooting an injured deer along the road was found guilty in court. In the process of shooting the deer, the man also shot himself in the hand, requiring medical attention. Cole also said when the man exited his vehicle, he left it in the middle of road on a blind corner, creating an even more dangerous situation.

Clearfield County Game Warden Mark Gritzer reports a person spotlighting for deer after 11 p.m..

Tioga County Game Warden Richard C. Lee is still looking for a possible rabid fox that had chased two people and bit at least one person in a park in Wellsboro. He advises anyone who sees or has contact with a potentially rabid animal, to call the Game Commission and seek medical attention if necessary. 

Lycoming County Game Warden Jonathan M. Wyant reports that, judging by the amount of beaver complaints this year, trapping beavers should be an easy prospect.

Union County Game Warden Dirk Remensnyder and his deputies trapped a bear that was one of the largest ever caught in Union County. The bear was over 500 pounds which could put it in the range of 650 pounds during the hunting season.

Potter County Game Warden Blaine Groshek reports that, while on night patrol, he has noticed deer – and particularly bucks – have been increasing movement and are being spotted more often. 

SOUTHCENTRAL REGION
From the Game Commission

Adams County Game Warden Taylor Knash reports that many individuals have been warned for after-hours violations at Long Pine Reservoir.

Cumberland County Game Warden John Fetchkan reports some possible poaching incidents have been reported recently. “Residents are encouraged to get descriptions of suspicious vehicles or people that might be looking for deer in fields, even if no shots are fired,” Fetchkan said. “They may be scouting the area out for future poaching events.”

Franklin County Game Warden Trevor Shauf reports an individual was charged for being in possession of exotic wildlife. 

York County Game Warden Scott Brookens reports big game violations have already started coming in. “It seems that people have already started trying to kill large bucks this year,” Brookens said.

York County Game Warden Justin Ritter reports the managed dove fields at State Game Land 243 drew a lot of birds and hunters on opening day.

NORTHEAST REGION
From the Game Commission

Sullivan County Game Warden Rick Finnegan reports that Deputy John DeMille assisted in apprehending a Bradford County man, and charges have been filed for unlawfully setting nine different rope snares to try to capture white-tailed deer. “Apparently, in Guatemala, that is legal,” Finnegan said.

Sullivan County Game Warden Rick Finnegan and Deputy Mike Scott investigated and charged several individuals for damaging property, using game lands for unintended uses and dumping. A habitat worker reported that a signpost was shot apart with a shotgun, several bags of trash were dumped, and the parking lot had been damaged by someone doing doughnuts with a pickup.

Sullivan County Game Warden Rick Finnegan, along with Deputies Mike Scott and Jeff Spako, are investigating some local residents who had poached a deer near Shunk. Anyone with information is encouraged to call in, and the call can remain confidential.

Luzerne and Carbon counties Game Warden Dale Ambosie reports investigating unlawful dumping of construction and household waste along sections of State Game Land 119 in Dennison Township, Luzerne County.

Luzerne County Game Warden Andrew Macko reminds hunters to remove all bait and minerals 30 days prior to hunting an area.  

Luzerne County Game Warden David Van Solkema reminds citizens to never take matters into their own hands and dispatch an animal that appears to be sick or injured. The Game Commission can take care of the matter in a lawful and safe manner.   

Lackawanna County Game Warden Benjamin Johnson reminds residents it is unlawful to intentionally feed bears. 

Lackawanna Game Warden Eric Kelly reminds shooting range users that they must remove paper targets when finished shooting.

Northumberland County Game Warden Michael Workman reports some instances of vehicles blocking access on game lands. “It’s important to obey all posted signage; many times, our habitat crew or emergency vehicles cannot access roads when gates are blocked,” Workman said. 

Susquehanna County Game Warden Ben Rebuck reports investigating several cases where treestands were left on state game lands after the close of hunting season. 

SOUTHEAST REGION
From the Game Commission

Berks County Game Warden Ryan L. Zawada reports that, during the opening day of the dove and goose season, he observed an individual shooting 20 minutes after sunset in a managed dove field at Blue Marsh Lake. “I observed him make his way to his vehicle with a juvenile who had come out of the field to join him.,” Zawada said. “The individual placed a loaded firearm in the passenger seat, where the juvenile was going to sit. The adult was cited for all appropriate charges.”

Bucks County Game Warden Hannah Jimenez assisted the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission with investigating a boating accident on the Delaware River in Bucks County.

Chester County Game Warden Matthew Johnson reports filing charges against a Red Tag hunter who struck a house with 20-gauge slug, damaging the window frame.

Chester County Game Warden Zachary Salsgiver reports an investigation revealed a red-tailed hawk found dead on private property was shot by the landowner. A caller reported the dead hawk to the Game Commission.

Dauphin County Game Warden Zach Soles reports a vehicle was abandoned on a state game lands parking lot. The vehicle’s windows were down, with doors unlocked, and drug paraphernalia in plain view. After further investigation, the registered owner was located. The owner gave consent to search the vehicle and the drugs and paraphernalia were confiscated. Charges were filed.

Dauphin County Game Warden Russell Kreider reports an individual was found guilty of hunting without a license during spring turkey season. 

Delaware County Game Warden Nicholas Visser reports encountering a driver who had hit a telephone pole while patrolling with Deputy Bill Cosenza along the Pennsylvania-Delaware border. “We informed Delaware police and EMS and stayed with the individual until she was taken in an ambulance.” Visser said.

Lancaster County Game Warden Greg Graham reports Game Wardens Daniel Gibble, Zack Salsgiver, Nick Visser, Deputy Bill Cosenza and cadets Bryan Johnson and Luke Mentzer teamed to apprehend an individual who was shooting from his vehicle at mourning doves on utility wires. Multiple callers reported the incidents. A vehicle stop resulted in the recovery of 18 doves that the suspect admitted to shooting from the vehicle. A shotgun, ammo and empty shotshell hulls were also located in the vehicle. At one location, the suspect fired directly a the residence. Criminal charges are pending.

Lancaster County Game Warden John Veylupek cited two individuals for unlawfully entering a wildlife propagation area that was posted against entry at Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area.

Lancaster County Game Warden John Veylupek reports citing three individuals for unlawfully shooting targets in a manner that could cause injury to persons or property at Middle Creek.   

Lehigh County Game Warden David Furmato reports filing multiple charges for violations including littering and alcohol possession on state game lands, following an anonymous tip.

Lehigh and Northampton counties Game Warden Jesse Cunningham reports locating multiple illegal bait sites ahead of hunting season, mostly from reports and tips in the community. “If you are aware of any ongoing violations in your local woods, please report it to the Game Commission,” Cunningham said.

Montgomery County Game Warden Raymond Madden reports issuing multiple citations and warnings on the first week of dove season. Hunters going afield for migratory birds are reminded that shotguns must be plugged, and a migratory game bird license is required.

Northampton County Game Warden Tyler Barnes reports citing an individual for hunting mourning doves with an unplugged shotgun.

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