Moline said, now when people are caught killing livestock they are fined and must pay the rancher the market value of the animal. At the meeting, the agency agreed that restitution costs should be more punishing. With the new policy, poachers would be required to pay four times the cost of the animal’s market value instead.

New policies hope to decrease trespassing and livestock deaths for ranchers

Many ranchers around the West are searching for a way to control a recent increase in livestock killed on the range. At the annual Wyoming Farm Bureau meeting this month, members supported a new policy they hope will address the problem. Farm Bureau spokesman Brett Moline said it’s not clear why people are shooting more livestock.

“We’ve had trouble with people poaching. They just go out and shoot to kill,” said Moline. “We’ve seen it in wildlife. We’ve seen it in livestock. It seems to be getting more prevalent west wide and it’s not just out on private land. It’s when they’re on public land as well, when they’re on the grazing allotments.”

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Moline said, now when people are caught killing livestock they are fined and must pay the rancher the market value of the animal. At the meeting, the agency agreed that restitution costs should be more punishing. With the new policy, poachers would be required to pay four times the cost of the animal’s market value instead.

Moline says Wyoming Farm Bureau members also supported another new policy that would expand Wyoming Game and Fish statutes, so their game wardens could help police forest boundaries near private property for trespassing antler hunters.

“The Game and Fish are more knowledgeable about the wildlife. They know where they’re going to congregate during the seasons when they’re shedding their antlers. So this will encourage them to be more active on their patrolling,” said Moline.

Moline said, often times trespassers walk past private property signs without seeing them. He said, by changing the Game and Fish statute the burden would be on the antler hunters to make sure they aren’t trespassing.

The hope is that the Wyoming Legislature will act on the group’s policy in the near future.

Melodie Edwards

Wyoming Public Media Statewide Network

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Free Range Report

Comments

  1. You are aware of the ‘Public Lands Hunt Club’ on Facebook? It is a group of Marxists that are advocating the random killing of cattle on the range not for meat but to punish ranchers for using federal land. I and many others filed complaints with FB and FB replied that the page was within their guidelines. I attempted to find out the owner of the page but to no avail although some that subscribe to the idea do use what appears to be their real name.

    I dropped FB awhile ago but they still had the page up. Law enforcement needs to investigate the owners of the page. They have claimed that they have killed cattle in a few states.

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