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Wildlife Officials Launch Incentive Program To Fight Poachers

U.S Fish and Wildlife

Oregon wildlife and law enforcement officials have partnered with a hunters’ group to create a new incentive program targeting poachers. KLCC’s Brian Bull reports.

Credit U.S Fish and Wildlife / Flickr.com

Poaching is a huge problem in the state. A six-year study in south Central Oregon showed illegal take of mule deer exceeded the number lawfully hunted. And worse, poachers killed more does than bucks, which can greatly hurt the population.

Michelle Dennehy of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife says a new program will hopefully curb poaching. Now anyone who helps state police arrest or cite someone who illegally takes or wastes big game, can be rewarded cash or preference points.

“You basically can choose to get five years of preference points.  If it’s a case involving bighorn sheep, mountain goat, moose, or wolves," explains Denney.  "Or if it’s a case involving elk, deer, pronghorn, cougar or bear, you can choose to get four preference points.  For someone who’s a really avid hunter, the preference points may be worth more than cash.”

This option builds on the Turn In Poachers Program, a collaboration between state police and the Oregon Hunters Association.

Copyright 2018, KLCC.

Copyright 2018 KLCC

Brian Bull joined the KLCC News Team in June 2016. He is a 20-year reporter who has worked at NPR, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including three Edward R. Murrow Awards and the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award in 2012.