Wildlife officers seek aid in solving moose killings
Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials are asking for the public’s help in identifying the person or persons responsible for killing a cow moose and her two calves Wednesday in an empty lot within Mountain Shadows Estates, a subdivision located on County Road 6421 between Granby and Grand Lake.
A witness hunting near the site that morning said that between 8-10 a.m. he heard several shots fired in rapid succession. The witness says he found the cow and a calf dead, the other calf dying, and that no one immediately approached the carcasses to claim responsibility.
An investigation at the scene by wildlife officers turned up “important evidence,” said Area Wildlife Manager Lyle Sidener. “With the public’s continued help, we are confident that we can find who did this.”
In recent years, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has conducted extensive public outreach to ensure that hunters properly identify moose while hunting elk. However, wildlife officials do not believe this incident was a mistake by a legitimate hunter.
“At this point, we have no reason to believe this was an accident,” said Northwest Regional Manager Ron Velarde. “The case is being investigated as a malicious, poaching incident. My officers are preparing an all-out effort to find the person or persons responsible and bring them to justice.”
Individuals who illegally kill a big game animal and abandon the carcass face a permanent loss of their hunting and fishing privileges, significant fines, felony charges and a possible prison sentence.
Anyone with information can call Colorado Parks and Wildlife in Hot Sulphur Springs at 970-725-6200, or Operation Game Thief at 877-265-6648 if they wish to remain anonymous. OGT is offering a $2,500 reward for information that leads to the suspect. Officials from Safari Club International have offered to match this amount, bringing the current reward to $5,000.