ODNR Extends Hotline Hours During Deer-Gun Hunting Seasons

Ohioans encouraged to report wildlife violations, illegal activity

COLUMBUS, OH - Ohioans seeking information about the upcoming white-tailed deer hunting seasons or individuals seeking to report
violations of state wildlife laws can take advantage of extended call center hours from November 19 to December 4, according to the Ohio
Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

The 1-800-WILDLIFE (945-3543) general hunting information hotline will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 19 and from noon
until 5 p.m. on Sunday, November 20, for the third annual youth deer-gun season.

Staff will also be available to answer calls prior to and during the popular deer-gun season, which begins Monday, November 28 and ends
Sunday, Dec. 4:

* 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, November 25
* 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, November 26-27
* 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, November 28-December 2
* 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, December 3-4.

The hotline will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.
"We anticipate nearly 400,000 hunters will be out enjoying Ohio's popular deer-gun season, and the Division of Wildlife will be ready and available to assist hunters. People should feel free to contact us with any question that may arise," said Steven A. Gray, chief of the Division of Wildlife.

Ohioans are encouraged to help enforce state wildlife laws by reporting wildlife violations to the division's Turn-in-a-Poacher (TIP) hotline at
1-800-POACHER (762-2437). The TIP hotline will also be open extended hours during the upcoming hunting seasons. Established in 1982, the TIP
program allows individuals to anonymously call toll free from anywhere in the state to report wildlife violations.

The 1-800-POACHER hotline is now open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day through December 30, with the exception of Veteran's Day, Thanksgiving
Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. Callers may be eligible to receive a cash award for information and are encouraged to leave a message during closed hours with as much
information about the suspected violation as can be provided. Tips can also be submitted online at the division's web page at Ohiodnr.com.

Commentary from Larry S. Moore
The 1-800-POACHER number is can result in monetary rewards for tips on illegal hunting and poaching activities. The number maintains a system whereby confidentially of the person providing the tip is ensured.

This season as sportsmen head out hunting they should check the 2005 - 2006 hunting regulations for changes in the law. These will be listed in red
in the hunting regulation handbook and are also available online.

Report any illegal activity, especially poaching of wild game, as poachers hunt the image of all law-abiding hunters the same way criminals hurt the image of the law abiding gun owner. Ohio has enjoyed record deer harvest and many record book deer have been taken in the state. Safety is of primary concern and is everyone's responsibility.
Have an enjoyable, successful, and safe hunting season.

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