This is a local story (I live in Pocatello and know the field where this incident took place).

This was a brave young man (the way he confronted poachers in the act of poaching). It also shows the uses of technology in controlling poaching and similar outdoor violations.

A longer version of this story appeared in the Idaho State Journal, but it is not on-line. Associated Press story.

About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan's Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of "Hiking Idaho." He also wrote "Beyond the Tetons" and "Backpacking Wyoming's Teton and Washakie Wilderness." He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

6 Responses to Young man with cell phone camera catches Pocatello area poachers

  1. Linda Hunter says:

    Ralph if the vegetation was planted along the road there would it stop poaching or just keep the poachers from being seen?

  2. SmokyMtMan says:

    The answer to your question is undoubtedly both. If the vegetation blocks one, it has to block the other.

    As the guy stated in the article, it would decrease the incidence of people just driving by, seeing a deer in the meadow, and shooting it from the window of the vehicle.

    Seems like the vegetation ‘wall’ would reduce poaching and at the same time be a very inexpensive solution, to boot.

  3. There have been a number of incidents.

    “Bull’s field” is a well known place to watch deer. Local people intent on poaching know about it, but local poachers also know the area is watched.

    My impression is that a lot of the poaching here is a “crime of opportunity” (last year a poacher who shot deer from the same spot was tracked to Utah), and so vegetation would help.

  4. Linda Hunter says:

    Thanks Ralph . . it goes to show you how knowing an area is a much better way to see good solutions to a problem. Every place is different and what works in one area might not work iin another, but we always seem to make judgements on our personal experiences. Trying to keep an open “trackers mind” and seeing what is real instead of what is perceived is a constant struggle. The internet makes it easier to make judgements based on inomplete information. That you and others here are willing to discuss and trade information is what makes this blog worthwhile. Thanks Ralph and others who contribute local knowledge to all the issues.

  5. mike post says:

    I think the core issue is that most western states wildlife agencies have reduced their numbers of wardens to the point where the expectation of being caught while poaching is too low to prevent the acts. These same folks are the most likely to see evironmental damage and report it as well. With too few trained eyes in the field the poaching and other crimes will only get worse.

  6. My motive is posting this beside giving this man a pat on the back was to indicate one way to make up for the decline in rangers/enforcement.

    I have the local Forest Service and BLM law enforcement officers’ numbers in my cell phone. I call in something about twice a year.


March 2008


‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey