Protecting wildlife, waterways that belong to us all
Another year has passed, and again, the California game wardens are proud to be supported by the Nevada County Law Enforcement and Fire Protection Council. I continue to be impressed with the council’s ability to help bring government agencies and citizens together.
Similarly, the California Department of Fish & Game wardens engage in “community oriented policing” when on patrol and during investigations. It benefits us all and is a practice wardens routinely have subscribed to for decades.
The wardens who patrol the towns and outlying areas work closely with other government agencies, landowners, ranchers, farmers, hunters, anglers, nonhunters and all who enjoy wildlife and the outdoors and who benefit from sound water quality and natural resources.
Another organization worth mentioning that has supported the wardens is the Nevada County Fish and Wildlife Commission, an advisory board to the county’s Board of Supervisors. Most residents may not be aware of this commission, but it supports conservation, our outdoor heritage, funds science-based education programs, assists wildlife rehabilitation groups and provides special equipment for wardens and biologists. Portions of the money collected from fines for poaching and pollution violations stays in the county and goes to the commission.
This past year, Animal Planet International sent a film crew from London to the United States to film and investigate bear poaching. One stop brought them to film game wardens in Nevada County. From DFG’s airplane, film crew members were flown out from Grass Valley and Truckee. They were amazed by the beauty of our wildlife and landscape and surprised by all of the unlawful activity. They went on patrol with us for two days and got to see California black bears. They witnessed and filmed several poaching cases that involved the illegal taking of bears.
The show is complete as a six-part series called “Crime Scene Wild,” and it has already aired in other countries. The producers said it has already won awards in Colorado and France. It is scheduled to air in the U.S. in the near future and will be on the Discovery Channel.
Despite the publicized shortage of the number of game wardens on patrol statewide, many poachers have been apprehended and a lot of our outdoor heritage has been protected. This part year saw poaching in the county continuing at a constant rate, but thanks to many hunters and other witnesses of crimes, DFG wardens were able to “take a bite out of poaching.”
While wardens have been busy making arrests and pursing criminal investigations, people have continued to give us information about this activity, reporting directly to a game warden or through CalTIP. Those reports help wardens focus on those criminals who cause the most damage to our natural resources.
The waterways and wildlife belong to all of us, and you can do your part to protect them. The CalTIP program has a 24-hour, toll-free number (1-888-334-2258) or to call to report poaching and pollution incidents. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for rewards.
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