Illegal hunting on the rise because of rising flood waters - - Jackson, MS

Illegal hunting on the rise because of rising flood waters

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WARREN COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Illegal hunting is on the rise right now because of flooding on the Mississippi river.

Deer and other wildlife are being forced out of their natural habitat to find dry land so they can survive.

Right now thousands of deer are displaced from Tunica south along the Mississippi River into Warren County due to the high water.

The Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks is facing numerous cases of illegal deer hunting due to the displacement. 

You are currently not allowed to hunt in areas that are flooded along the Mississippi River, other than waterfowl. 

Some people are not listening and are taking advantage of the situation and killing multiple deer. 

Lt. Tracy Tullos of the Mississippi Dept. Of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks said, "If you were some person trying to commit a crime against wildlife that would have been a perfect opportunity to do that. They have no ability to escape the flood water and the conditions and so that's an easy target for someone trying to commit a wildlife crime." 

Colonel Steve Adcock from Mississippi Dept. Of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks says this is a crime his team is not taking lightly. 

He said, "We are in full force in these areas. We sent a large part of our man power to these areas working them 24 hours a day. We've made numerous head lighting cases and hunting from the levee cases."

According to officials, the fines are steep and people will lose their hunting privileges if they choose to hunt anyways.

Adcock described the punishment and said, "Some of these we have made could run into the range of 10 to 15 thousand dollars and there is jail time associated with it also." 

Lt. Tullos described what happens when a hunter is caught with a deer illegally.

He said, "Anytime we have a crime against wildlife and they are in unlawful possession of the deer we will seize the deer and its donated to the hunters harvest program. They donate it to children's shelters or the Salvation Army, or needy families and organizations. It's a very good program and that's where we take all of or seized wildlife."

If you see any illegal hunting, please call the Dept. of Wildlife and report anonymously at 1-800-BeSmart

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