Deer Decoys Snag Hunting Violators
RAPID CITY, S.D. - The deer was fake but the citations
Conservation officers in the Black Hills National Forest
of southwest South Dakota and northeast Wyoming issued about 30 citations
last weekend to hunters who stopped on roads to shoot at deer replicas
placed nearby, according to Bruce Nachtigall, regional law enforcement
specialist for the Game, Fish & Parks Department.
Shooting at big game from roads is illegal.
Nachtigall said road hunting for deer is a problem every
year, but Saturday morning was especially bad.
Twenty vehicles passed a decoy at one spot. Fifteen of
them stopped and at least one hunter shot from eight of those vehicles.
"Some shot once, others more than once. One individual
fired five times. Essentially he emptied his gun," Nachtigall said.
"Saturday morning was probably the worst example of
hunting violations I've been around. Just to have that many people stop and
shoot, that was pretty bad."
Most of the violations were for shooting from the road, or
from a vehicle.
Officers set up the decoys in the central Black Hills
Saturday and in the Northern Hills Sunday for the opening of the buck-only
They picked areas where hunters have in the past shot at
deer from roads, or where landowners have complained about such practices.