Game Warden Blotter
BAITING DOVE, SHOOTING QUAIL
Acting on information gathered last dove season, Terrell County Game Wardens Jonathan Griffin and Arnold Pinales staked out an area that had been baited and watched from a distance. Two individuals were observed hunting dove from a vehicle and later they continued their hunt from the middle of the baited area. Ten minutes after sunset they called it a day and headed back to the camp house. The wardens made contact with the subjects a few minutes later as the hunters were in the process of cleaning 18 dove and 11 quail. When asked about the quail, they claimed them as commercially raised game birds. A couple of questions from the wardens that could not be answered proved their claim was not valid. Citations for hunting over bait and possession of quail in closed season are pending.
BAITED LAST YEAR, CAUGHT THIS YEAR
Terrell County Game Wardens Arnold Pinales and Jon Griffin made contact with a subject in an area that they had found with numerous shotgun shells and signs of questionable dove hunting last year. A heavily milo-baited area was found adjacent to the windmill that the subject was hunting. Case pending.
DOUBLE DIPPER DINGED
Sterling County Game Warden Michael Jaramillo checked a subject hunting dove that morning and found him hunting that same afternoon; this subject was over the limit by five dove. Over the bag limit of dove was filed; case pending.
CORN AND MILO BY POND TIPPED OFF WARDEN
Kent/Dickens counties Game Warden Cane Shumaker entered into a ranch where he found a field with a large pond that was heavily baited with corn and milo. With no one around, he returned later that evening. No hunters were in the area but some were on an adjacent property that overlooked the baited pond. Then, four suspects arrived at the pond and set up their decoys directly over the bait and began to hunt. Seventeen dove were seized; cases pending.
GROUP CAUGHT RALLYING DOVE, QUAIL
Borden/Dawson counties Game Warden Brent Tucker observed a group of five subjects rallying birds while walking down a county road and shooting at doves as they flushed off a power line. They then flushed a covey of quail and shot two. Citations were issued.
ARCHER TRYING TO ARROW DOVES OVER BAIT
Borden/Dawson counties Game Warden Tucker observed a man wearing a ghillie suit with a recurve bow hiding next to a barn. After watching the archer for twenty minutes unsuccessfully attempting to harvest dove with the bow and arrows, Tucker made contact with the archer. Tucker talked to the archer for a while and discovered the archer was baiting the dove with corn.
THE NATURAL FOOD WAS BETTER
Lubbock County Game Warden Mallory Mitchell was out checking the last of the dove hunters right at sunset. As she was calling it a day and on her way back to her truck, she spotted a large amount of commercial birdseed scattered in the field. Both individuals were cited for hunting over bait. The sad thing was that there was already a freshly harvested sunflower field adjacent to the property, and the doves were flying all day.
WARDENS BUST NUMEROUS BAITERS
Smith County Game Wardens Dustin Dockery and Brad Clark, along with Cherokee County Game Wardens Eric Collins and Brian Bearden, found a total of seven baited fields and seized a combined 107 illegally taken mourning dove in Smith County during the first two days of hunting season. Most fields were baited with milo. Numerous citations were issued.
UNLICENSED HUNTERS COULDN’T PUT GUNS AWAY FAST ENOUGH
On the second day of dove season, Williamson County Game Wardens were patrolling for dove hunters. Wardens Arlen Jones and Joel Campos heard some nearby gunshots while checking a dove field. The wardens found four hunters who decided to put their shotguns inside the truck when they saw the wardens approaching. Jones found two hunters without a hunting license and Campos found one hunter who didn’t have a hunting license and had an unplugged shotgun. Cases and civil restitution pending.
LANDOWNERS FIELD LEASED BUT NOT BY HIM
McLennan County Game Wardens Michael Serbanic and Matt Kiel made contact with a landowner regarding people hunting without landowner consent. Apparently an individual with no valid interest in the property had leased the land to an outfitter. No one was more surprised or upset than the landowner to find more than 50 people hunting on his property opening day. He was more surprised when he learned this activity had been going on for years.
GRAIN SPREAD ON THE GROUND COSTS GROUP 70 BIRDS
Johnson County Game Warden Scott Kirkpatrick and Hood County Game Warden Deshanna Creager made contact with four individuals out of the DFW area. During the process of checking licenses, birds and shotguns, the game wardens noticed grain on the ground. The individuals possessed more than 70 birds taken from the baited field. Cases pending.
HUNTERS CONFESSED TO MISTAKING HAWK FOR COLLARED DOVE
Real County Game Warden Clint Graham was checking dove hunters near Barksdale. Graham pulled into a camp and was met by a hunter who had just come in from the field. When asked how his hunt went, the man said, “Not very well, not very well at all.” Graham said he heard a lot of shooting from the group. The hunter said, “I messed up and I messed up bad.” The hunter showed Graham a hawk that he mistook for a ring-necked dove. The hunter stated it was flying slowly like a ring-necked dove and that the sun impaired his vision. The hunter stated that he kept the hawk because he figured he was going to be checked on opening morning and wanted to do the right thing. The hunter was cited for taking a protected species.
POTS OF TREES WITH MILO SET ALONG FENCE LINE
Austin County Game Warden Sonny Alaniz and Federal Game Warden Kevin Sieler checked a group of 23 hunters hunting on property adjacent to a tree farm in Austin County. Pots of trees were set up along the fence line. Warden Alaniz found milo placed in the pots. Sieler spoke with the guides and charges are pending.
FATHERS ASKS WARDEN HOW CLOSE TO BAITED FIELD HE CAN HUNT, LETS SONS HUNT THERE
Shelby County Game Wardens Nathan Skeen and Anthony King were patrolling an area that was rumored to be baited for dove hunting. They confirmed by finding piles and lines of milo scattered inside a gas location site, with fields surrounding the site. That afternoon, Skeen was near the baited area waiting when he heard shots at that location around 6:15 p.m. Upon approach, Skeen noticed two hunters hunting a short distance from the bait. Through questioning of the father of the two juvenile hunters, he knew the bait was there but decided to hunt it anyway. The same father asked San Augustine County Game Warden Lee Hall a few weeks earlier how far away from bait they could hunt and still be okay because he “knew his neighbors were baiting.” He owned all the surrounding property where the bait was placed. Cases pending.
TAKING BAITING TO ANOTHER LEVEL
Houston County Game Wardens Eddie Lehr and Zak Benge caught four subjects hunting dove over bait. Lehr and Benge walked around 1.5 miles to get to the field. The subject who put out the bait admitted to Lehr that he had put out 800 pounds of milo two weeks prior. Cases pending.
LIVE STINGRAYS KEPT IN APARTMENT UNIT
Harris County Game Wardens Jennifer Inkster, Ross Sidman, and Hennie Volschenk responded to a complaint from a Houston apartment complex. A manager was informed of standing water in the hallway of an apartment building and was forced to inspect the unit that seemed responsible. When he entered, he found a large swimming pool filled with “dinner plate” sized stingrays and a smaller tank with pup stingrays. The wardens determined the stingrays were prohibited. The tenant was issued a citation, and approximately 19 stingrays were seized.
MAN WITH BAIT COULDN’T SLIP AWAY
Harris County Game Wardens Gregg Johnson, Hennie Volschenk, and Mark Bane were checking dove hunters along Hwy 290. After the wardens checked several hunters in a corn field, Volschenk advised Johnson that there was a group of hunters in a fenced-in area that needed to be checked. As Johnson arrived at the location, he noticed that the hunters finished the hunt with all having their limits. During the inspection, Johnson noticed one hunter slip away from the group and start walking toward a vehicle. At that time, Johnson followed the hunter to his vehicle and found an ice chest half full of milo. The man confessed to baiting the field and even showed the wardens where he placed the milo. All birds were seized and the citations were issued.
MAN SHOOTS TURKEY VULTURE, SPEEDS AWAY
Starr County Game Wardens Bryan Dulock, Carlos Maldonado, Brad Whitworth and Mark Anderson were checking dove hunters near Garciasville. At the same time, Dulock was issuing a citation to a group of hunters, Maldonado observed an individual shoot at a large bird in the sky. Immediately after the bird hit the ground, the hunter picked it up and took off at a high rate of speed. After 20 minutes of searching the brush for the vehicle, wardens found it occupied with the girlfriend of the hunter in question. After a few minutes of talking with the female, they were given the location of her boyfriend and soon after he showed up, mildly confrontational. After a few hours, the man said “you got me,” and took them to the location where the evidence was hidden. A turkey vulture was seized as evidence and a citation was issued.