Elk NetworkUtah Investigates Poaching Cases

General | January 27, 2023

Below is a news release from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. For 2023, Fiocchi partnered with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to increase the visibility of poaching incidents in an effort to reduce poaching nationwide.

Utah Division of Wildlife Resources conservation officers are seeking information after two big game animals were illegally killed in Beaver County during the 2022 hunting season.

Conservation officers discovered a dead deer fawn on Oct. 8, 2022, in the area of Big John’s Flat in Beaver County. After further investigation, the officers determined the deer had been shot and killed. The deer was a female, and there were no hunts allowing the harvest of a female deer during that time frame.

In the second incident, officers investigated a dead branch antlered bull elk that was found in the Indian Peaks Wildlife Management Area in Beaver County on Oct. 21. It was determined that the elk had been killed during the spike-only elk hunt in the area. However, the elk had antlers that branched above its ears, which meant that it did not legally qualify as a spike elk and was an illegal harvest.

“Individuals who unlawfully kill big game animals and other wildlife are stealing opportunities from those who might otherwise be able to harvest the animal legally in the future,” DWR Conservation Officer Brandon White said.

Anyone with information regarding the illegal killing of this deer or elk, or any other wildlife-related crimes in Utah, is encouraged to report it to DWR conservation officers in one of the following ways:

If you have information about this specific case, you can also contact DWR Conservation Officer Brandon White at 435-322-0671. A reward may be available for information leading to the successful prosecution of those responsible for the crimes, and requests for confidentiality are respected.

Every year, Utah conservation officers conduct numerous investigations into the illegal killing of wildlife. In 2022, officers confirmed a total of 1,283 wild animals and fish were illegally killed, valued over $609,000.

(Photo source: Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)