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Field Reports from Ohio Division of Wildlife Officers


Central Ohio – Wildlife District One

During the 2023 white-tailed deer gun hunting season, State Wildlife Officer Maurice Irish, assigned to Delaware County, investigated a report of an individual harvesting two antlered deer. The suspect was found to have taken two bucks without a valid permit for the second harvest. The deer was seized, and the suspect was fined $727 in total through Delaware Municipal Court.

State Wildlife Officers Josh Elster (Pickaway County) and John Coffman (Fayette County) attended the Deer Creek Chapter of Pheasants Forever banquet. The event, attended by a large crowd, supported the organization’s conservation efforts, including a popular fall youth pheasant hunt that emphasizes safety. The chapter also conducts prescribed burns for habitat management and collaborates with the Division of Wildlife to manage over 1,600 acres.

Northwest Ohio – Wildlife District Two

During a license check in the 2023 white-tailed deer gun hunting season, State Wildlife Officer Jason Porinchok (Putnam County) found a hunter without a deer permit. The hunter received a citation, paid a $250 fine, and avoided a one-year hunting license revocation by committing no further wildlife violations for a year. Officer Porinchok provided regulatory education, and the hunter subsequently purchased a permit and legally harvested a deer.

Northeast Ohio – Wildlife District Three

State Wildlife Officer Evan Huegel (Ashland County) responded to a Turn-In-a-Poacher (TIP) report about unauthorized raccoon hunting. Officer Huegel cited three adults for hunting without permission, resulting in $411 in fines. The public is encouraged to report wildlife violations anonymously at 1-800-POACHER (762-2437).

Officer Aaron Brown (Wayne County) was alerted by the Shreve Police Department to a large trash dump at Shreve Lake Wildlife Area. Brown identified two suspects, one of whom had prior litter violations. One was fined $731 and ordered to complete 40 hours of community service, while the other, facing elevated charges due to prior convictions, was fined $964 and required to complete 100 hours of community service.

Southeast Ohio – Wildlife District Four

State Wildlife Officers Levi Boggs (Gallia County) and Ted Witham (Jackson County) attended the National Wild Turkey Federation’s Gallia County Longbeards Chapter 2024 youth spring wild turkey hunt. The event, which included a safety and turkey identification briefing by Officer Boggs, saw 59 participants harvesting 24 turkeys, with eight first-time hunters.

Officers Mark Basinger (Perry County), Chris Dodge (Hocking County), and Supervisor Dan Perko cited two individuals for riding ATVs in a non-designated area at O’Dowd Wildlife Area. Each driver paid a $205 fine in Hocking Municipal Court.

Southwest Ohio – Wildlife District Five

During the 2024 white-tailed deer muzzleloader hunting season, Officers Micah Collier (Brown County) and Gus Kiebel (Adams County) encountered a hunter in a tree stand without a valid deer permit. The individual, previously cited for not wearing hunter orange, was fined $175 for the violation.

State Wildlife Officer Alex Almeter (Greene County), Supervisor Dave Warner, and District Five staff attended the grand opening of Great Council State Park, Ohio’s 76th state park. They assisted with presentations, facility tours, fish identification, and a fish frying demonstration. The park features a 12,000 square-foot interpretive center modeled after historic Shawnee longhouses, a native plant prairie, a half-mile trail, and scenic views of the Little Miami River.