By Teri Boggess
The N.C. Wildlife Federation has added $17,000 to increase the reward to $20,000 in the case of the killing, painting and dumping of a black bear in Buncombe County last week.
The contribution to the reward pool, announced Friday, comes because the federation wants to help solve a poaching case that reflects poorly on law-abiding hunter who uses North Carolina’s forests.
“We are hoping the amount of the award will get folks talking,” federation CEO Tim Geswicki said Monday. “Incidents like this cause a blight on true sportsmen who practice ethical and responsible stewardship. We are offering these resources to support our wildlife law enforcement folks and to underscore the seriousness we place on what is without question a calculated, callous and reprehensible act of destruction. This wanton waste of wildlife resources … must not be tolerated.”
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service started the reward pool with $3,000 for anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest, a criminal conviction, a civil penalty assessment or forfeiture of property. Call the commission’s toll-free wildlife violations number at 800-662-7137. Rewards for anonymous tips do not have to be made public.
The dead bear was found just more than a week ago on a Buncombe County road with “WHATS BRUIN?” painted on its head and “w-h-a-t-s” across the claws on the right paw and “b-r-u-i-n” across the claws on the left paw, according to an N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission news release this past Thursday. More....