BEND, Ore. — The Oregon Hunters Association has bolstered the reward up to $6500 for information that leads to an arrest or citation in the case of three elk that were poached west of Bend on or about Oct. 28, 2020.
The bull, cow and spike elk were discovered separately, but all three were in the same area and appear to have been killed at the same time. The cow and spike were left to waste in a blatant demonstration of a thrill-kill. The large bull had its head and shoulders removed as a trophy.
OHA Bend, Redmond, Capitol, Josephine and Mid-Columbia chapters, along with several private donors, pooled resources to increase the reward amount. The Bend chapter hosted an online auction which raised $2,150. Fundraising efforts raised awareness about the case, according to Greg Petsch, who is the banquet chair and led the effort.
“There is so much poaching,” Petsch said, “They did this for their own satisfaction. I don’t know how they find this satisfying.”
OSP Fish and Wildlife Troopers discovered the first carcass, a cow elk, on Oct. 30 after a call to the Turn In Poachers (TIP) Line from a hunter who came across the carcass while scouting the Dry Canyon area East of Sisters near Hwy 126 and Quail Tree Drive. Troopers investigating the area around the cow subsequently discovered a large bull elk carcass. Although bull elk were in season at the time, the poacher had taken only the head, antlers and some shoulder meat. It is a crime to leave carcasses to waste even if it is legal to kill the animal.
Two days later, on Nov. 1, another call came through on the TIP Line from a hunter who reported finding a spike elk carcass. A spike elk is a one-year-old male.