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SANTAQUIN — State conservation officers are asking for the public's help in identifying who shot and killed nearly two dozen ducks before leaving the birds to rot at a Utah County wildlife management area.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources received a report Monday that several ducks were left for waste at Santaquin Wildlife Management Area. Conservation officers responded to the area and located the carcasses of 18 mallards, three wigeons and a green-winged teal that were dumped without any sign to keep any of the meat.
Much like it is illegal to poach animals, it is illegal in Utah to allow wildlife to waste. The severity of the crime depends on the case and ranges from a misdemeanor to a felony.
A similar incident was reported last fall when 60 waterfowl were illegally placed in a South Salt Lake dumpster. Another 49 ducks with a cumulative total value of $735 were poached in 2020, according to DWR statistics.
"We want to make sure all hunters and anglers use the edible portions of meat from animals that they harvest legally, so that way we can sustain hunting and fishing for future generations," DWR conservation officer Josef Lehr told KSL.com in November after the South Salt Lake case opened.
Anyone with information regarding the ducks left to waste in Utah County or any wildlife-related crime in the state is encouraged to call 1-800-662-3337 or submit a tip online at the DWR's website.