Criminals out in the bush Saturday

You can help track down criminals destroying wildlife and habitat by reporting suspicious activity to conservation officers.

Saturday seemed to bring all the criminals out in the back country around Kelowna.

Conservation officer Ed Seitz reports ATV riders illegally drove into the non-motorized, protected area of the Graystokes; paintball enthusiasts left a pile of junk around; a fire burning toxic waste was left; and someone shot a two-point mule deer and left it on private property.

He asks that anyone who saw anything suspicious contact them with as much information as possible, at the Report All Poachers and Polluters hotline, toll-free: 1-877-952-7277.

He wonders if someone golfing at Tower Ranch early Saturday morning may have seen an ATV in an area of private property on the north side of the golf course. He would appreciate a call if you did.

A young mule deer buck was found shot and left on private property there Saturday morning, even though the property is signed as private at all access points and the owners did not grant permission for anyone to enter.

Not only is it illegal to shoot an animal and then leave it instead of using the meat, but it’s also illegal to shoot on private land without the owner’s permission. In addition, two-point mule deer bucks are not in season. A season on four-point or larger mule deer opened on Sept. 10, along with any-sized white-tailed bucks.

Seitz also found a lot of illegal ATV activity occurred Saturday in the non-motorized zone in the Graystokes area east of Kelowna near Moore Mountain, reached from Linden Lake and from the 201 Forest Service Road.

Under the Park Act, there’s a $345 fine if you’re caught in that closed area in a motorized vehicle.

He also patrolled in the Postill Lake Forest Service Road area and found that paintball users had left a pile of garbage in the area. There’s a fine of $575 for that offence.

A smoldering fire of toxic materials such as plastics was found, likely after it was lit overnight, said Seitz. There’s a fine of $173 for leaving a fire unattended and it’s also illegal to burn toxic materials.

Conservation officer Terry Myroniuk is investigating a poaching incident that was reported Sept. 11 off Postill Lake Road, and would appreciate any information that might help lead to the shooter.

A mature buck was killed and the meat left to rot. Only the head and antlers were taken.

“It’s not legal hunting if you only kill to take the trophy and leave the meat behind. Because it was in a very obvious place, it was likely it was dumped there Sept. 11,” he said.

“Such actions anger responsible hunters,” he commented.

He asks that anyone seeing anything suspicious in the back country call the RAPP line and report it. You can remain anonymous if necessary.

That would include someone shooting moose or young or female elk, which have no open season currently; or hunting at night or using a light to hunt.











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