Officials seek deer poacher near Craig
CRAIG — Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers are asking the public for their help in identifying the person or persons responsible for shooting and injuring a high-quality mule deer buck with an arrow approximately Sept. 9 or 10, near the city of Craig.
The four-point buck had a distinctive ‘kicker’ on the right branch of its 30-inch rack and was often seen in the vicinity of Woodbury Park and Cedar Mountain Village near Craig. It survived the initial wound but was euthanized by wildlife officers Sept. 11 due to the severity of the injury.
Investigators say that, based on the evidence, the buck was likely not shot by a legal hunter.
“At this point, all we want to do is find out what happened,” said District Wildlife Manager Mike Swaro, of Craig. “We are asking whoever shot the animal to come forward as soon as possible or, if anyone has information, to let us know right away.”
He stressed that Colorado Parks and Wildlife will conduct a thorough investigation using currently known information and evidence gathered from the deer.
“As is the case with any poaching investigation, we will do what we can to find the person responsible,” he said. “But, if the person who did this comes forward right away, we will absolutely take that into consideration.”
Swaro added that he was able to salvage the meat from the buck, and it will be donated to local charities.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife reminds the public that many poaching investigations are solved with tips from the public and encourages everyone to report illegal wildlife activity immediately.
To provide information about this case, contact District Wildlife Manager Mike Swaro, 970-942-8275. To remain anonymous, contact Operation Game Thief, 877-265-6648 with your tip about this case or any wildlife violation. Rewards may be offered if the information leads to a citation.
For more information about Operation Game Thief, go to http://www.cpw.state.co.us/aboutus/Pages/OGT.aspx.
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