Arizona Game and Fish officials are hoping someone will come forward with information on a bull elk poaching that occurred the evening of June 25 near Verde Glen.
The carcass of the elk was found about 50 yards off a private road that leads into the subdivision. The animal's antlers, which local Wildlife Manager Scott Polluck estimates were at least 6x6, were sawed off the animal's head.
The antlers were in velvet.
Polluck says whoever illegally killed the animal must have been driving at least a pickup truck because the antlers would be too large to fit inside a passenger car.
The elk had been shot high in its rib cage but officers were unable to determine the caliber of the gun used because the slug passed through the animal and could not be found.
The carcass of the animal was found by a Verde Glen resident during a regular morning walk with his dog.
Polluck says he is optimistic there are residents who have information about the slaying since a 6x6 rack of antlers in velvet is an unusual sight.
"People would notice those," he said.
There is a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible. If you have any information, call Operation Game Thief at 1-800-352-0700.
If you're a parent who enrolled your son or daughter in the Arizona Diamondbacks Training Center that began Monday on the Payson High School field, it appears to have been worth the $150 tuition.
The coaches the Diamondback organization sent to Payson are top notch. They were Billy Horton, Tim Bergin, Mike Masciangelo and Dave DiDomenico.
Throughout the week of camp, all have shown they have a thorough knowledge of the game and also have the considerable skills it takes to work with youngsters.
Most impressive is the fact the coaches told the youngsters on opening day they were not concerned with the campers' talent, or lack of, but more importantly their hustle and attitude. Not every young player is a natural-born athlete, but the common denominator among all youngsters at this camp was that they can hustle and do the little things it takes to be a successful team member.
The camp wraps up today (Friday).
Youth football continues
Payson Youth Football Association officials have decided to hold two additional registrations for players and cheerleaders interested in participating in the program this fall.
Registration is from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. July 26 and 27 at the Rumsey Park multipurpose field. Practices will begin at 5 p.m. July 30, also at Rumsey Park. Registration is $50 per player and $35 for cheerleaders.
Participants must bring a copy of their birth certificate and a physical exam report. If vacancies exist on any of the teams after the final registration, officials will accept late sign-ups at $60 per player and $45 for cheerleaders.
Forms are available at Farm Bureau Insurance Agency office, 100 W. Roundup. Call Eric Santana (474-1775) or Hugh Schrank (474-5613) for more information.