The Arizona Game and Fish Department, or AZGFD, along with a list of concerned parties, is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of a poacher or poachers, to the tune of $10,000, up from $2,000 earlier this year. The poacher or poachers took several mule deer in Arizona last October.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department, through its Operation Game Thief program, has raised its bounty up to $3,000. “In addition, several sportsmen’s organizations and private companies are offering rewards up to the following amounts: Willmeng Construction, $3,000; Arizona Deer Association $1,500; Mule Deer Foundation, Arizona Chapter, $1,000; Arizona Mule Deer Organization, $500; Broadhead Nation and Ron Nixon, $500; and Christian Hunters of America, $500,” said the AZGFD in a call for help.
Department officers discovered the carcasses of several mule deer, both bucks and does, they believe were taken toward the end of October last year. The carcasses were found outside of Congress, Arizona, northwest of Phoenix.
“The location is near a well-traveled area along Date Creek Road,” said wildlife manager Brian Dietz. “Anyone who was scouting, recreating or just passing through the area may have witnessed something that could help us solve this case.”
“Poachers are not hunters,” he said. “They are criminals stealing from the residents of Arizona.”
The poacher or poachers took the skins and meat of the deer, and according to department officials, “spent considerable time in the area,” taking game on multiple occasions.
The AZGFD is asking anyone with information to contact the department if they can, and is accepting anonymous tips as well. People with info can reach out to the AZGFD online through their website, or by phone at 1 (800) 352-0700.