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Colorado teenage hunter charged with poaching moose

Colorado moose

Photo credit: Dreamstime

Thanks to a tip, a 19-year-old hunter has been charged with poaching a Colorado moose last fall. Investigators were tipped off by a fellow hunter who discovered the moose carcass and immediately called Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW). According to Fox News, once officials arrived at the scene, they were able to recover a .270 caliber bullet lodged within the “spoiled carcass” and boot tracks left behind by the poacher. Using those clues, police linked the crime to Callan Hyatt who was hunting in a nearby camp.

Boot track from teenage poacher

Photo credit: Colorado Parks & Wildlife

Hyatt did not have a moose hunting license. In fact, when questioned by authorities, he did admit to shooting the animal while elk hunting but said “the animal was too far away to positively be identified,” according to Fox News. He pleaded guilty to five misdemeanor violations, which included hunting in a careless manner, failing to locate wounded game, failing to dress wildlife, illegal possession of wildlife and hunting without a license.

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“We understand hunting mistakes and accidents will happen, but we expect sportsmen and women to take immediate responsibility for their actions,” said CPW District Wildlife Officer Jeff Behncke in a news release. “Thankfully the vast majority of hunters are ethical and do the right thing in cases like this; unfortunately, there are a few that may prefer to try and evade authorities. We offer everyone this advice; if you accidentally kill the wrong species, you should call us right away and field dress the animal immediately so that it does not spoil.”

Hyatt was ordered to pay nearly $20,000: $10,000 in fines and another $10,000 for “killing a bull moose that would qualify as trophy game,” according to Fox News. He may also lose hunting and fishing privileges for five years within the 47 states that are members of the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact.


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matthew a. - posted 11 months ago on 04-20-2019 05:30:32 pm
Sheridan, WY

Hes lying, he knew it was a moose. He made a poor ethical decision by pulling the trigger , then as cowards do - walked away from it. He fessed up when confronted only to clear his consious.

Bill G. - posted 11 months ago on 04-20-2019 02:04:41 pm

Poachers are not hunters.

marcus t. - posted 11 months ago on 04-20-2019 09:46:38 am
Pullman, wa

I’m glad to know that he will have recourse in all the other states who participate in the Interstate Wildlife program. The long term for him is too light in my opinion. Cases like this are so egregious he should permanently lose his privileges for life.

Erik S. - posted 11 months ago on 04-19-2019 04:36:22 pm

People like this are also why we have to wear hunter orange, like what kind of person pulls the trigger at a target they arent sure of? At least the fines in this case are pretty stiff, good job CPW.

Nicholas K. - posted 11 months ago on 04-19-2019 09:41:38 am
Quarryville, PA

Does Colorado have antler restrictions on elk? If he couldn't tell what animal it was how could he even determine cow or bull let alone the number of points. He should lose his license for a lot longer than 5 years.

Dave G. - posted 11 months ago on 04-19-2019 09:21:58 am
Sacramento, CA

Stories like this blow my mind. How could anyone shoot first and hope it is the right animal? Probably horsebleep and he knew exactly what he was doing, but damn what a waste, He should absolutely lose his privileges.