Missouri’s Operation Game Thief (OGT) offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of the poacher(s) who shot a cow elk and left it for dead Nov. 18, 2019, on National Park Service property near the end of M Highway in Carter County. The perpetrators did not remove any meat or other parts of the animal. By the time conservation agents found it, the meat was no longer salvageable for donation.
OGT is an effort of the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) and the Conservation Federation of Missouri (CFM) to work with the public to help catch poachers.
According to MDC, this is the sixth elk killed by poachers over the past several years. MDC Protection Division Chief Randy Doman said investigations into each incident are ongoing. The $20,000 reward goes to the first conviction received on any of the elk poaching cases.
“The OGT reward monies have been donated by the public and reflect how much Missourians care about conservation, our native wildlife, and the laws that protect them,” Doman said. “We appreciate this strong support to help bring in information that could lead to convictions.”
CFM Executive Director Tyler Schwartze added, “Poaching is stealing precious wildlife resources from all Missourians, and this must be stopped. We are offering this reward amount in hopes of finding those responsible for committing these selfish acts.”
If you have any information, contact Operation Game Thief at 1-800-392-1111.
(Photo source: Missouri Department of Conservation)