The Arizona Game and Fish Department is seeking the public’s help in finding who is responsible for illegally killing bull elk in two unrelated poaching incidents in northern Arizona.
The first poaching occurred on Nov. 25 on the Coconino National Forest.
Officers investigating the case received information that a 5x6 bull elk was found in the 29 Mile Lake Area (Game Management Unit 6A), which is approximately one mile west of the intersection of Highways 260 and 87 north of Payson.
Evidence at the scene indicates that the elk was left to waste since it was not field dressed and none of the meat was removed.
Tire tracks were discovered in the area and it is believed the vehicle has a short wheelbase. A reward of up to $2,000 may be available for information leading to the arrest of the violator(s).
The other poaching occurred on Dec. 2 during a cow elk hunt in the Kaibab National Forest (Game Management Unit 8).
A spike bull was shot and left to waste south of Nagiller Tank, which is southwest of the Hat Ranch.
Investigating officers discovered shell casings from a 30.06 caliber rifle at the scene, and a bullet from the carcass of the animal.
A reward of up to $1,350 may be available for information leading to the arrest of the violator(s).
“We realize that occasionally mistakes happen, but we need anyone with information to come forward and help solve these cases,” says Wildlife Manager Mike Rice. “These acts are unethical, and we want the individuals involved to take responsibility, do the right thing and contact us.”
Anyone with information about these cases can call the department’s Operation Game Thief Hotline toll free at (800) 352-0700 or use the online form at www.azgfd.gov/thief.
Callers should provide case number 11-001885 for the Unit 6A case and 11-001972 for the Unit 8 case when calling. All calls may remain confidential upon request.