Game Commission field officers report on outdoor happenings

Field officers for the state Game Commission’s Northeast region filed the following reports on June 7, according to the agency’s website:

Susquehanna County Wildlife Conservation Officer Rich Briggs reports that increased activity on state game lands (SGL) has brought increased vehicular traffic. ATVs continue to be an issue, as well as blocked gates, and activity in areas closed to motorized vehicles. Several warnings have been issued, and one citation is yet to be filed.

  • Northern Susquehanna County WCO Mike Webb reports a very complex and intricate littering case was adjudicated in May. The case involved a large dump site on SGL 35. The defendant was fined $500 plus additional cleanup and restitution costs totaling $3,101.07. “A conviction in this case was the result of long hours of hard work by all involved. Hopefully, the word spreads about how costly it is to dump or litter on lands open to hunting or furtaking,” Webb said.

Wayne County WCO Frank J. Dooley reports four men he apprehended jacklighting deer at night with a crossbow and a spotlight from a vehicle all pleaded guilty to the charges. The judge leveled fines and costs for the poaching incident at $9,000. “This sends a strong message that this kind of crime against wildlife will not be tolerated in Wayne County,” Dooley said. The subjects also will have the privilege to hunt in Pennsylvania revoked for five years for each count.

  • Pike/Monroe County WCO Mark Kropa reports he is investigating a turkey that was shot from a vehicle on High Line Road in Porter Township. The person who reported the violation stated he was calling a turkey when he heard a vehicle and a shot was fired, with the pellets nearly striking him. He confronted the subject who deliberately covered his license plate so it could not be seen. The vehicle is described as a gray Subaru Legacy with the first three letters of the license plate being GDZ or GZD. The shooter was described as in his late 20s early 30s with a goatee. Anyone with information is asked to call the Northeast Regional Office at 675-1143.
  • Pike County WCO Kirk Miller reports an individual was stopped for riding a dirt bike on SGL 180, near Shohola Falls, on a trail not open for motorized travel. The individual faces fines up to $200.
  • Columbia County WCO John A. Morack reports that in May, a Schuylkill County man was cited for depositing litter in a wooded area within the borough of Centralia. Two garbage bags containing paper, plastic and glass products were discarded. The littering fine and court costs totaled $431.50.
  • Lackawanna County WCO Kevin Moran reports that over the Memorial Day weekend an individual was reported to have been shooting at geese. An investigation was conducted and the individual admitted that he injured at least one goose. Citations have been filed.

Lackawanna County WCO Kevin Moran reports that he already is seeing turkey hens with poults. He reports that it looks as if it was a very good breeding season. One hen was seen with 11 poults in southern Lackawanna County on state forest land.

  • Wyoming County WCO Victor Rosa reports that while remote and inviting, camping, swimming littering, and consuming alcoholic beverages are prohibited on state game lands.

Field officers for the state Game Commission’s Northcentral region filed the following reports on May 24, according to the agency’s website. They are the latest reports on the website:

  • Lycoming County WCO Harold Cole reported that he recently had a call for a dead osprey in the Village of Black Forest, which is at the top of a mountain surrounded by big woods that mostly are state forest lands. Cole said the caller stated that the osprey was seen going after a neighbor’s chicken and hit a wire or tree branches. The bird must have been taking a shortcut over the mountain from one drainage to the other and decided to try something else, Cole said.
  • Clinton County WCO Ken Packard reported that while a hunter was hunting spring turkey on Beech Creek Mountain, he observed a grouse courting a hen turkey. This brought back a memory of mine that while doing a survey at Penn State University, I observed a male pheasant courting a female mallard duck until a drake mallard arrived and “escorted” the pheasant away.
  • Lycoming/Union counties Land Management Group Supervisor Thomas M. Smith said, with the assistance of The Nature Conservancy the Game Commission’s North Central Land Management, fire crews successfully conducted 136 acres of forested prescribed burns on two blocks on SGL 75. The burn is intended to promote oak regeneration, a fire tolerant species, by eliminating the competing beech brush and birch.
  • Lycoming County WCO Kristoffer Krebs said on May 17 a Montoursville man pleaded guilty to a charge from an incident that occurred on Nov. 30, 2012, in Loyalsock Township. On that date, the actor had an antlerless deer hanging in his garage. The deer was not marked with a game kill tag. The man claimed to have killed the deer in New York state. The defendant was charged with one count of unlawful taking or possession of game or wildlife. He was ordered to pay a $500 fine by District Judge Gary Whiteman, of Montoursville. The defendant also faces the loss of his hunting privileges.

Field officers for the state Game Commission’s Northwest region filed the following reports on June 7, according to the agency’s website:

  • Butler County WCO Christopher J. Deal reports that a couple of individuals have been cited recently for using pellet guns to shoot animals in their yards. One individual was citied for “hunting” squirrels in the city of Butler with a pellet gun. Another individual was cited for using a pellet gun to shoot bluejays. He was upset that the bluejays were harassing the other animals that shared the bird feeder in his yard.

“If you see or encounter what appears to be a juvenile or sick-looking animal (i.e. raccoon), please do not handle the animal,” said Allegheny County WCO Dan Puhala. “Call your local PGC regional office.”