South Texas is known for quality white-tailed deer. Each year, Texas hunters tag numerous big bucks in this part of the state, but unfortunately there is also some illegal deer hunting taking place in the region. Just this week, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has reported illegal hunting in Starr, Webb and La Salle Counties. Some deer were taking by road hunters and other by lease hunters that liberally interpreted property lines.
Five Deer Hunters in Starr County
While a Starr County game warden was on patrol, he came across an open gate leading to a ranch and decided to investigate. Upon entering the ranch, the warden spotted two vehicles and five people dressed in camouflage, standing around a hunting blind. At first the individuals said they were working on the ranch, but, after some questioning, admitted they were hunting. The warden followed the hunters down to where one of the hunters had shot an eight-point buck and helped the hunter load the deer. After further inspection, however, it was found that the hunter had marked the deer with a tag that expired in 2012 and also did not have a valid hunting license. The buck was seized and the meat was donated to a local family. Cases and civil restitution pending.
Webb County Illegal Whitetail Hunting
A Webb County game warden received a call from a landowner who believed someone poached a deer on his ranch. The warden arrived at the ranch and began to investigate the area. There, he found evidence of a deer being shot, a fence being cut and a deer dragged under the fence. The warden then went to the adjacent property to see if anyone was at the deer camp and to begin looking for evidence. There was no contact made at the camp, but the warden saw evidence of a deer that was recently processed at the cleaning station. The material used to repair the cut fence was also at the camp. After investigating further and talking to landowners plus the hunters leasing the property, one of the men said he had shot the deer on the neighboring property and cut the fence to retrieve the dead deer. Multiple cases pending.
La Salle County Buck Hunter
One evening, a La Salle County game warden set up on a back road near Los Angeles, Texas, where poaching activity was known to take place. Around 8:30 p.m. a slow moving truck made its way past the warden while shining a bright light. After following the vehicle for a short distance, the warden initiated a traffic stop. The two people in the car had a loaded rifle lying across their laps. A set of fresh deer antlers was also discovered in the bed of the truck. The two occupants were taken to jail for several Class A violations. A few days later, a deer carcass was discovered on a nearby ranch. The deer antlers from the truck bed matched perfectly. It was also discovered that one subject was a convicted felon. Felony charges are pending.
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