Conservation officers confiscated moose meat west of Williams Lake recently. Photo submitted

Suspected poachers charged west of Williams Lake

Conservation Officer Service working with local First Nations to protect wildlife resources

Increased patrols due to wildfire hunting closures have resulted in more charges, said Insp. Len Butler of the Thompson Cariboo Region of the Conservation Officer Service (COS).

The Williams Lake Tribune initially contacted Butler after the BCCOS tweeted that officers caught suspects west of the Fraser River hunting at night, and also hunters with an illegal bull moose.

In the instance of the moose, Butler said the matter was a case of hunters reading their Limited Entry Hunt incorrectly.

“They made a mistake on their draw. They did everything else legitimately. They realized it and were very forthcoming with information.”

Butler said the moose, which was harvested outside of the burned area, was confiscated and given to Abraham’s Lodge in Williams Lake to be put to use.

Charges of hunting at night and hunting on private property will be laid against three or four individuals who killed two bucks west of the Fraser River, Butler said.

“These individuals (charged) are First Nations but I can say there are as many non-First Nations night hunters as First Nations,” Butler said.

“We know there is meat being sold in this area and taken to the Lower Mainland. It’s an issue that we deal with every year. Unfortunately it tarnishes all the good hunters we have in this area but I know without the help of the hunters and landowners we wouldn’t catch a lot of these individuals, and I call them individuals because I don’t want to call them hunters, they’re poachers.”

Working together with First Nations, rather than against one another, in developing a strategy to protect wildlife resources this hunting season has been positive, said Butler, noting the groups are being guided by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that sees protection of wildlife at the forefront.

“It’s been very positive. We’re focusing on the resources, not the politics,” Butler said Monday, noting that there as been extra enforcement out on patrols due to the special hunting closures this year resulting in more poachers being caught. “If we can work together to sustain the moose population, that’s a win-win.”

Butler noted that extra enforcement has had officers ensuring all wildlife resources are being protected, however, moose have been the priority.

Read more here on the moose hunting closure.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Single-engine aircraft crashes near Telkwa

Two occupants of the plane sustained minor injuries and were transported to hospital

Cullen announces bid for provincial NDP nomination for Stikine riding

Current MLA Donaldson not seeking re-election

Northern Health records 1st fatality due to COVID-19

Six people died from the novel coronavirus on the weekend, health officials confirm

Police look for vehicle, male driver after incident involving girl, 11

The driver was described as an older Caucasian male with white hair, no glasses, and no facial hair

Anger growing among B.C. salmon anglers shut out of public fishery

Fisheries minister stands by “very difficult” decisions to limit openings

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Most Read