DWR Press Release
With hunting seasons in full swing, officers need your help
With most of Utah’s hunting seasons in full swing, wildlife officers are asking hunters and anglers—and others who are in the outdoors too—to watch for illegal hunting activities. That includes hunters shooting animals but not retrieving them, shooting that occurs after dark or any activity that seems suspicious.
Division of Wildlife Resources Captain Mitch Lane says DWR conservation officers catch plenty of wildlife violators on their own. But the officers are spread thin. That’s where you come in.
“We need your help,” Lane says. “We need you to keep your eyes and ears open while you’re enjoying time in the outdoors. If you see something that doesn’t seem right, please let us know.”
“Even if what you saw doesn’t look like a big deal to you,” says DWR Law Enforcement Section Chief Rick Olson, “let us know about it. Some of our most significant cases started when someone called us with a small tip that led us to more information.”
If you witness something that you know is a hunting violation—or something that’s simply suspicious or out of the ordinary—Olson says you shouldn’t confront the person who’s committing the violation. Instead, contact the DWR immediately. You can report the activity the following ways:
– If you see a wildlife violation occur, calling Utah’s Turn in a Poacher (UTiP) hotline is the best way to get an officer to the scene.
The hotline—1-800-662-DEER (3337)—is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you can’t remember the UTiP number, but you’re hunting or fishing at the time the violation occurs, pull out your Utah hunting or fishing license or permit. The number is written on the license or permit.
If you can’t remember the UTiP number, and you don’t have a hunting or fishing license or permit with you at the time the violation occurs, you can also call the nearest police department or sheriff’s office. The office will send a DWR officer or another law enforcement officer to the scene.
Be a good witness
A description of the person and the location where the incident is occurring are crucial. “If you have a GPS unit with you,” Olson says, “give us the coordinates. GPS coordinates are really helpful in getting us to the right spot as quick as possible.”
If you find something suspicious that isn’t an emergency—for example, if you find a dead big game animal from which someone has removed the head—or if you have any other information you want to share about a possible wildlife violation, you can report it two ways:
– Call 1-800-662-3337
– Email the information to officers at email@example.com.
Olson says if you provide the information via email, officers won’t receive it immediately. “If you send information to us via email,” he says, “it might be a day or two before we can get back with you.
“If you need to reach us right away,” he says, “call 1-800-662-3337.”
“Officers on patrol” web page
Visiting the “Officers on patrol” web page is a great way to learn about some of Utah’s recent poaching arrests and to stay current on poaching cases DWR officers need your help with.
The page is available at www.wildlife.utah.gov/dwr/news/officers-on-patrol.html.