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Deer Poaching on Audubon Land Leads to New Law, Bigger Fines

A couple of winters ago, Andy Rzeznikiewicz, who manages the 702-acre sanctuary at Connecticut Audubon Society's Center at Pomfret, found the remains of several deer that had been shot and killed.

A couple of winters ago, Andy Rzeznikiewicz, who manages the 702-acre sanctuary at Connecticut Audubon Society's Center at Pomfret, found the remains of several deer that had been shot and killed.

We don’t permit hunting on our sanctuaries, of course, and in any case deer season was over. That portion of the sanctuary was near a neighboring house, and Andy concluded that the neighbor himself had shot the deer. A conservation officer visited and the neighbor admitted it had been him: he had killed several deer out of season on a wildlife sanctuary that had been posted “no hunting.”

His fine? $100. And his gun was given back to him. Andy called it a slap on the wrist.

“Just beyond where he was shooting the deer, we have a public hiking trail,” he said. “Someone could have been hurt. The poacher asked the conservation officer if it was the woman walking her dog five minutes after he shot the deer who reported him. That’s how close we were to a potential injury.”

Last week, thanks to Andy and to a number of members of the state General Assembly, Governor Dannel P. Malloy signed into law an act that makes poaching Criminal Trespass in the third degree, a Class B misdemeanor. A person is guilty if he or she is hunting, trapping or fishing on posted property.

And it significantly increases the penalty, to a minimum of $500 or a maximum of $1,000 – a fine that is far more appropriate to the crime than $100.

Connecticut Audubon Society is not anti-hunting. But our wildlife sanctuaries are just that – sanctuaries where wildlife is protected. We send our thanks to the General Assembly and to Governor Malloy for enacting this important law. You can read the bill here.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Tom Falconieri June 18, 2012 at 06:13 PM
I cant believe it !!!! I just cant believe it !!! I ran over a SQUIRREL this morning on 35 !!!!! Thank GOD my lust for killing is satisfied for today THANK GOD!!! Tomorrow is another day and i will be in WITHDRAWAL AGAIN DAM!!!! By the way i am not fat . Ever try and walk the woods to hunt THINGS. It also gets you in great shape, By the way deer is the major distributor of TICKS. If you dont believe me call HOWARD at the CT DEP. All those PHD TYPES are full of themselves and dont know nothing i assume. That is what the anti hunting groups say !!!!. They do the research and in many cases ask Hunters for info. As the matter of fact several scientists are worried because DOE'S are now growing Antlers. The DEP is very concerned with this. By the way for all you know it all half baked environmentalist types should know deer multiply by leaps and bounds. Their numbers are doubling in 2-3 years. Care to comment on this. And for all you bleeding heart LIBERALS that think hunting is INHUMANE. You should see first hand how wolves and coyotes Rip fawns to pieces. Not a pretty site by no means. And quite non humane. By the way i posted that illegal hunting is a NO NO. And poaching is something i absolutely hate. But for this liberal DEM MALLOY to increase the fines is ok by me. Now if he could only stop gabbing on phones and running stop signs as well. Hunt Safe Hunt Often And Share the Sport SEMPER FI RECON BN 2ND MARINE DIVISION. MOS 0317
--- June 18, 2012 at 06:26 PM
infinitethree, I'm thinking that maybe Tom and Charley should meet and form a committee to eliminate all of the deer population in CT with extreme prejudice. With Charley as the spokesperson and Tom as the COMBAT MARINE who is so proficient at KILLING, the deer simply don't stand a chance. Never mind that ticks gravitate towards warm-blooded mammals, ie, dogs, cats, rabbit, humans, etc, it is the DEER, those danged, evil, humanity-reviling DEER that need to be controlled. Even now, mutant deer are being created by evolution, as attested to by Charley. It would appear the DEER have learned to overcome their animal limitations, have begun to communicate with one another, and are now plotting the destruction of the pesky human species through biological warfare. Tom and Charley have an agenda. Far be it from any of us to stifle their desires and needs. I mean, this thread was about Gov Malloy imposing stiffer penalties for poaching. And we all now this is an open invite to USE CAPS and profess we were in CT before the DEER ever were, so they need to go. Yikes.
Tom Andersen June 18, 2012 at 06:33 PM
These comments have gone from the relatively relevant to the absurd. Luckily I have the ability to turn off the notification mechanism, so I won't be following along any more. But feel free to keep shouting at each other. Enjoy!
Charley June 18, 2012 at 06:41 PM
Dogs and cats have tick repellant applied by good owners. Increase the poaching fine, makes no difference to me. More people will get killed by deer each year, billions of dollars annually in damages and injuries will be incurred. The hunting season will get expanded. The deer population will eventually be bought under control. The left tree hugging fringe will continue to throw a fit.
Bill Hillman June 18, 2012 at 07:09 PM
OMG!!! I'VE EATEN VENISON CHILLI AND LIKED IT!
Wanda Fullerton June 18, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Listen to this, Tom the combat MARINE. If you really are a Marine (which after reading all your crap on here I'm sure your not) but if you are truely a Marine then start acting like one. Marines are gentlemen, you, you fool are not acting as such. Either square yourself away or check into the nearest VA hospital. If your nearest VA is in West Haven I will drive you there myself. Do that or put a sock in it.
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 07:28 PM
Charley--charley charley Come on... the same repellent can be applied by you to your backyard..and kill the ticks that exist there. If you place deer fencing up and around your property, then the deer will not linger there. You think that finding differences and then dismissing the argument is ok? You brought up the rat analogy. Rats are not eating the vegetation on your property. They are not vegetarians...therefore you shouldnt liken a rat to a deer. Ok? The point is--I get what you are trying to say---now why is it so hard to acknowledge someone else's point, even if it weakens your argument? You cant kill a deer in your backyard --most of the time. Should you take a gun and shoot the deer, you have infringed on your neighbors rights, and also violated the law. Simple. Im for getting rid of deer. They do cost us tons of money. Billons is no exaggeration. But lets approach the topic with a more moderate stance. Things get accomplished when you empathize a bit more with opposing views.
Charley June 18, 2012 at 07:51 PM
Actually Luca, when applying the deer repellant for cats and dogs you don't want to get that stuff on you. We do spend hundreds each year spraying our yard. I don't have a problem with deer fencing except a little difficult placing it in the driveway. Some fire departments have issues with deer fencing, even though they seem to take down anything and everything in their path. As I stated earlier, even the CT DEP and NY DEC acknowledge the deer issue. The so called argument is mute, there is an issue with the deer and it will get resolved, town by town, state by state. I'm not here to debate you, just lay out some facts to misguided people. Like I said, I have no issue about raising the poaching fine, they can knock them selves out, I don't care. I also don't care if my neighbor kills a deer from his second floor window either. Yeah, I know you're all worried about getting shot, better chance getting shot walking around Hartford.
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 07:51 PM
Tom once told me he was in the Army.... now he became a marine. Now he is using the current MOS (317) despite the fact that during the Vietnam war a sniper had an MOS of 8541. (They changed them in the 1980's) Strange how he doesnt know what he was. but, hey--he will get all crazy and challenge etc. Thats what he does when it is revealed he is a bs'er.
Charley June 18, 2012 at 07:54 PM
You can kill deer on your property ( I think min 1/2 acre) by use of archery.
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 07:56 PM
The so called argument is mute, What does that mean? Its not able to be heard? Ridicule the argument about being shot....you are worried about a deer tick "threatening" your kids/family. Now you are gonna laugh at the idea of getting shot by a guy with a gun? Mute. Haha. right....you just write in and act as though you are the guy who has all the answers. Mute arguments. hahah.
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 08:03 PM
The facts are these Lots of cars are damaged by deer. Deer act as hosts to ticks that are associated with Lyme disease, amongst others. They destroy vegetation. They have become pests and are overpopulated. BUT. There are laws in place to protect people--over deer. There are reasons why these laws exist, and they are there to protect your neighbors. Peta and other pro deer organizations, have a certain amount of weight in political circles, but so too does the NRA and the Automobile insurance lobby. Looking at this sensibly, rather than zeroing in on only one side of the argument will keep opposing viewpoints --well, opposed. The idea should be to recognize the costs and benefits of the deer situation, and work closely with the PETA's of this world in finding a workable solution. But one thing I simply cant see ridiculing or criticizing is the idea that firearms in suburban settings should be allowed and that " you have a better chance getting shot walking in hartford" than by a hunter going after intruding deer. That is simply absurd and does notihng to make you seem reasonable and in search of a solution.
Charley June 18, 2012 at 08:04 PM
Chill Luca, lets not get your speedo all in a wad now. No one is going to shoot you.
Tom Falconieri June 18, 2012 at 09:57 PM
No limits with a BOW
Tom Falconieri June 18, 2012 at 10:03 PM
So luca as an army dude that is right were you belonged MOS SNIPER WAS ACTUALLY CHANGED MOS conversion was 2006 some say 2007 it is not very clear when as a marine for life we assume the new coding. Or didn't you know that. As usual you are FULL OF %^&* LUCA. And personally i dont give a flip what anybody believes what i was. Because it was a long time ago. And i do act like a MARINE all the time. Except when people get me agrivated. Now wanda i am very FAMILIAR with the inside of the VA HOSPITAL. Spent a long time their. ARE YOU FAMILLIAR WITH THE INSIDE WANDA??? Now you and LUCA can find someone else to AGGRAVATE. I am DUN!!!
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 11:41 PM
Thanks Tom As predicted. If your MOS was 8451 --then you dont say I am 317...because you werent. Its like saying I played for the St. Louis Rams back in the 70's. YOu didnt--you would have played for the L. A. Rams. Wanda--by the way he claimed earlier (when he was a different name) that he got shot in the TET offensive and then spent time in a VA hospital. ( a sweet he called it I spent time in a VA sweet.) BUt of course, when you are in the army , and wounded you dont go to a VA hospital, you go to a field hospital or a military hospital. Tom may also have forgotten that he was wounded in the TET yet said he stayed in the army (now marines) until 70...but obviously none of this adds up. Maybe he only realized he was injured in the TET offensive and 2 years later, checked into a hospital after he was discharged? Who knows? But he did get crazy and say Im full of %#*( because somehow he thinks that he feels people back off when he gets really tough. haha. Ok tom--whatever...you think you can pretend? Its tough when your iq is down there. You should not lie. Idiots get caught when they lie. Just an FYI. You may think you are smart--but you are super dumb. Like crazy dumb. haha.
sebastian dangerfield June 18, 2012 at 11:46 PM
Charley-Im dont wear a speedo. And sorry your family is under attack by deer. You must be the one shivering in fear as the dreaded deer 'threaten' your family with INFECTION. haha. unbelievable the types we get. and they all are these extremists. The far right is nutty---just as the far left is. Get out the guns!! Wow.
--- June 19, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Tom, You were DUN several comments ago, but you didn't want to bow out honorably.
infinithree June 19, 2012 at 01:17 AM
Gary Larson and The Far Side come to mind :) http://thetwowhos.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/FarSide-Deer.jpg http://www.foxcreekphoto.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/farside070221.jpg
--- June 19, 2012 at 01:25 AM
infinitethree, Brilliant! If only there were an applicable Bloom County strip I could use....
Tom Falconieri June 19, 2012 at 10:07 AM
LUCA WHAT A LIST OF PEOPLE HE AGGRAVATES Patch postings DARIEN STAMFORD NEWTOWN TRUMBULL WILTON RIDGEFIELD NORWALK SHELTON BETHEL FAIRFIELD GREENWICH WESTPORT TOLLAND CLINTON WESTON REDDINGEASTON BROOKFIELD BUSY GUY MAKING A NAME FOR HIMSELF ALL OVER THE STATE. ALSO MAKING PEOPLE MAD ON THESE LISTED PATCH SITES
Tom Falconieri June 19, 2012 at 10:12 AM
DBjr I will remember you words ALWAYS. Liberals always love to BASH CONSERVATIVES. Yes i am dun till SEPT When my arrows are bussed by my BOW TECH!!! Hunt Safe Hunt Often And Share The Sport!!
Wanda Fullerton June 19, 2012 at 01:44 PM
Combat Tom, Yes I am very familliar with the inside of several VA's St. Albans in Jamaica Queens for many years and when the new West Haven VA was built I was moved there, and is where I work now. It would be so very disapointing and but also heartening to find out you are not who you say you are. Because in all my years in the VA network I have never came across a non-gentleman Marine. Even at the most difficult times of recovery. Every marine I had the honor to work with remained a gentleman through out. Tom, if you really are a Marine, you know very well that you are to remain a gentlemen through it all. Especially when someone (your spelling) agrivated you. So tighten up get your gig line straight combat Tom.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Luca, Field mice and white-tailed deer are both part of the deer tick's life cycle. Killing off either one will eliminate the carrier of Lyme disease and Lyme disease itself. Unfortunately, because field mice are nocturnal and live underground, they are nearly impossible to fumigate for ticks, or to kill off. Hence, deer are the easy target. When the pilgrims arrived, there were very few deer. The habitat was more suited for moose, and they were the dominant ungulate. Only after the great, old growth forests were cut down to build warships for the Dutch king and then the British King, did the environment start to change. But, deer were always seen as food and a commodity, and pioneers hunted deer to near extinction for food and buckskin. Because of hunters' license fees and taxes on guns, bullets, bows and arrows, state conservation departments have brought back the deer. But now it has gone too far. I was an active hunter and hunter safety instructor when a strange new bacterium was discovered on Fire Island, NY and residents wanted all the deer with tumors and diseases killed off. They hired professional exterminators. NYC liberals fought that off, and soon the disease deer spread to Lyme, CT. Deer have hollow hair, so they have natural life preservers and can swim across the LI Sound.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 09:17 PM
Both field mice and deer are essential for the deer tick to proceed through its reproductive life cycle. Extermination of the ticks on either host, or the hosts, will prevent the deer ticks (99% of them now carry Lyme disease) from reproducing, and therefore stop the spread of Lyme disease. Unfortunately, mice are nocturnal and live in bunkers, and so are nearly impossible to kill. Deer are easier to fumigate or kill. BTW, deer o kill more people than any other animal. I ride a motorcycle and have had numerous close calls with deer at various hours, in various seasons. If you don't live with deer endangering your life on a daily basis, you should recuse yourself from this debate, because preserving your childhood fantasies of cartoon deer should not endanger the health and lives of real people. I was a young hunter and hunter safety instructor when many diseased deer and a strange tumors and other diseases started to appear on Fire Island, NY. The residents complained and DEC scheduled professional riflemen on helicopters to cull the sick deer. NYC anti-hunters objected and blocked the culling (family of yours?) As a result, diseased deer (who have hollow hair and float well) escaped the island. Afterwards, a newly discovered strain of bacterium was identified near Lyme, CT.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 09:18 PM
Quit getting in the way of biologists and environmental professionals doing their jobs. Don't let your childhood Disney cartoons of anthropomorphized deer color your thinking and judgment.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 09:23 PM
Tom, CT is a "Shall Issue" state of carry permits, the only type of pistol permit issued by CT. You are a loose canon. Your anger and rhetoric do not reflect well on yourself, and we whom others would paint with the same brush. If you can't say anything positive, don't say it at all. Thanks.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 09:31 PM
Sorry, Tom. I've gotten used to staying home. Too many ticks during early bow season. Too many anti-hunting nut jobs harassing me or vandalizing my car during gun season. Not enough deer during late bow and muzzle-loader season. Too much liability, if God forbid, a wounded deer should walk a ways and drop dead in front of a child or an anti-hunter or on their property. Darn Liberals are so delicate and easy to traumatize, and so quick to legal action that I can not afford. Good luck in your hunting and lobbying efforts. Remember this old martial arts saying, "The defeat of an enemy requires his agreement." So, don't antagonize the enemy, win them over.
Ping Gwo June 20, 2012 at 09:35 PM
Darn right. I've seen them tiny little buggers, but didn't know they were chiggers. ARGH! I'm glad I'm just a blood-thirsty ex-hunter who kills everything that tries to crawl on me and make me into a meal!
Keith June 26, 2012 at 11:32 AM
look Glen...It's apparent that you don't believe in harming animals...that's fine...I have kids who are like that and several friends who don't sleep for days because they run over a squirrel. I am a hunter...all types....bow, shotgun, rifle and muzzle...it makes me sick to hear stories of idiots out there poaching. It makes us law-abiding hunters look bad too. But the sad fact is Glen, that if we are not allowed to hunt the deer and keep their numbers in check, thousands of deer will be killed by road strikes due to over population and if we have more bad winters, they will slowly starve to death....a horrible way to see an animal die. I've seen a carcass of a deer that starved to death and it was not pretty. I respect your believe in not wanting to harm animals, but don't try to take away my belief in hunting.

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