Morning Read: Poachers, illegal hunters hit the woods in NY

Last weekend, I chased a poacher off my farm in Westport.  “How was I supposed to know this is private land?” he said, with the kind of goofy defensiveness that you hear from people when they know they’ve crossed a line.

I turns out we’ve had a bumper crop of illegal hunting in New York already this fall.  This from the Associated Press.

Conservation officers say they’ve ticketed more than 70 people for illegal hunting in eastern New York since late October.

Many of the offenses involved “deer jacking,” shooting deer at night using lights, and some included using bait to attract deer or bears.

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6 Comments on “Morning Read: Poachers, illegal hunters hit the woods in NY”

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  1. If Clapton is God, Warren Haynes is Jesus says:

    Unfortunately I understand your frustration, Brian. I happen to live on a corner in Lewis County that’s a bit “in the sticks” that has two prime deer “runways” on both sides of my property. It’s a great place for the deer as there’s hay, corn, and alfalfa fields all around my property as well.

    Unfortunately for me, half the county knows of my prime location and so I can literally watch several hunters in their pick-up trucks drive up and down both roads repeatedly waiting and watching for deer to cross the road. I’ve never reported such activity as, frankly, there’s so many of these lazy hunters that I’d be on the phone half the day.

    On occasion I’ve even returned home from work or some other destination to find these supposed hunters parked on my lawn or very near my drive-way. I love venison as much as the next guy, but it’s beyond ridiculous at how lazy these people are the lengths they’ll go to shoot a deer.

  2. dave says:

    “there’s so many of these lazy hunters that I’d be on the phone half the day”

    You wouldn’t have to report every one of them. The DEC will likely make an effort to patrol the area if it is as bad as you say, which will cut down on what you see. I suspect it would only take a call or two.

    Pretty crazy to think about how many people ride around with loaded guns and take shots across roads most likely not knowing what the heck is beyond the field on the other side.

  3. brian mann says:

    Yeah, it can be creepy. I regularly have kids running around in the woods on my farm and I also have a good arrangement with a hunter in Port Henry who hunts the land.

    It would have been really easy for this poacher on my property to have gotten dangerously crossways with other humans…

    And he just seemed oblivious. I plan to put up a BUNCH of new posted signs next weekend, but I wonder if it’ll do that much good.

    – Brian, NCPR

  4. If Clapton is God, Warren Haynes is Jesus says:


    The DEC does patrol the area but the hunters are wise enough to know that they can’t cover my general area all the time. It’s partly why they’ll drive up and down the road a few times before stopping their car and waiting. They want to be sure there’s no DEC or game wardens anywhere nearby.

    I should add that the landowners that have bordering property have their land posted but to no avail. Myself and all my neighbors work full time and so we’re not at home a good deal of the time. The hunters have realized this and “road hunt” during the day mostly. It’s really a shame….

  5. Two Cents says:

    I feel absolutely positive the day i leave my camp after a weekend, there is somebody walking all over it.
    Posted signs mean nothing. Children, dogs, livestock, and the broadside of your barn are all in peril during hunting seasons. Be safe.

  6. Mervel says:

    I think it does make a difference to put up new signs and to say something to illegal hunters. This stuff thrives on our silence, it is not okay it is not one of those wink and nod things everyone does. It is a hassle but I do think it is worth the effort to post and to speak up when you see poachers.

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