We are already a month into this new year and just like last year, this year didn’t pause to let me finish up last year before starting. I find myself still working to finish up the last couple years as 2017 starts. I am sure several people reading this have the same feeling. 2017 also brings us some other new items that I will discuss later.

The biggest thing that Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Troopers in the Roseburg and Coos Bay Offices have been trying to wrap up is our serial elk poaching cases. As a brief overview, in the last 2 and a half years we have been working hard to find who has been killing the elk in the Tioga Unit. We are now up to 20 bulls killed and left that we believe are all connected. Additionally to that, last year we had 3 bulls that were killed that would be “wall hangers.” Those were killed in Glendale, Oakland and the Tokatee Air Strip. All these animals were shot and left, nothing taken off them. That is extremely strange to me and what makes it even more odd is, no one is calling to tell us who did it. Surely this upsets someone. It should upset everyone! I find it hard to believe that no one knows who did this. I don’t understand why people are protecting these poachers. I am hoping a new year changes this. Not only am I hoping the killing stops but that someone will do the right thing and let us know who did the killings. I hope someone steps up and lets us know who robbed opportunities from 23 other hunters and hundreds of other wildlife enthusiasts. If it helps convince anyone, the reward for the Glendale Bull is $7500 and $5500 for the others. All you have to do is call in and point us in the right direction. You can even be anonymous. The reward is for information leading to the arrest.

Speaking of rewards, here are some other base rewards you can receive if you give us information about the following animals. This is the TIP reward information:

Information on the T.I.P. Reward Program:

The Oregon Hunters Association offers rewards to persons, through their T.I.P. fund, for information leading to the issuance of a citation to a person(s), or an arrest made of a person(s) for illegal possession, killing, or taking of bighorn sheep, mountain goat, moose, elk, deer, antelope, bear, cougar, wolf, furbearers and/or upland game birds and water fowl. T.I.P. rewards can also be paid for the illegal taking, netting, snagging, and/or dynamiting of game fish, and/or shell fish, and for the destruction of habitat.

In addition rewards may be paid for information leading to the issuance of a citation to a person(s), or an arrest made of a person(s) who have illegally obtained Oregon hunting/angling license or tags. People who “work” the system and falsely apply for resident license or tags are not legally hunting or angling and are considered poachers.

Rewards:

Bighorn sheep, mountain goat, moose $1,000;

Elk, deer, antelope $500;

Bear, cougar, wolf $300;

Habitat destruction $300;

Illegally obtaining Oregon hunting or angling license or tags $200;

Game fish, shell fish $100;

Upland birds, waterfowl $100;

Furbearers $100.

The new one this year is $200 reward for turning in someone for falsely applying for tags or licenses. This would include nonresident people coming to Oregon and resident licenses. All these funds come from Oregon Hunters Association and are the base rewards. As we see from the elk mentioned above, other people can donate and increase the rewards as they wish.

My hope for this New Year is that the public starts standing up for the wildlife. I hope that they work with us even better and in greater volume than in the past to stop the senseless crimes against wildlife. I hope that is something everyone, hunters or anglers or wildlife enthusiasts, can all agree on. If you have any TIPS you can call me or email me at aaron.baimbridge@state.or.us or 541-440-3333. You can also call the anonymous TIP line at 800-452-7888.

I will look forward to seeing you at the Roseburg Sportsmen’s Show and we can discuss this further.

Aaron Baimbridge is a trooper with the Fish and Wildlife Division of the Oregon State Police

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