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11Z50
02-14-2008, 3:13 AM
Over the last few years I have noted an alarming trend regarding DFG Wardens in the field. Generally, I have had pleasant contacts with Wardens in the field. I used to teach Hunter Ed for DFG, and got to know several Wardens well.

Recently, I have done some research on the CV lead ammo ban and it's implications for Central Valley shooters. I also assisted an Attorney on a criminal defense case in which a hunter is being prosecuted severely over a questionable deer kill. I have also noted an increasing tack towards Jackbooted thuggery among some of the newer Wardens.

Did you know that if you are in a public area, or even private property, and you are armed or have a "means of take" such as a bow, or spear, you are assumed to be hunting and subject to inspection by DFG.

Figure this one out: If you are killing non-game animals, you are not hunting, but you still need a hunting license and are subject to inspection.

Did you know that you need a fishing license to kill a rattlesnake?

Did you know that if you are hunting or shooting and you place your loaded weapon in the bed of your parked truck, or lean it against your parked car you can be cited for having a loaded weapon in a vehicle?

While not all Wardens I've been in contact with are bad guys, some are at the very least over-zealous and heavy handed when dealing with shooters and the public in general. Anybody else have adverse contact with DFG lately?

tgriffin
02-14-2008, 7:06 AM
Yeah I have heard a few things about the Wardens. I however have always had pleasant contact with them. Cant tell you how many times I've been trudging back from the duck blinds up at yolo bypass and low-and-behold there is a warden with a metal detector. Always been nice about it though. Just doing their job.

M1A Rifleman
02-14-2008, 7:32 AM
Yea, ask my father, though some of them were !@@@ long ago.
About 28+/- yrs ago my father took me hunting as 13 or 14 yr old for the first time. Since I was a young kid with questionable responsibility skills at holding on too important papers, he held my license in a back pack with his own while we both hunted together. His next trip he went alone and ran across a warden whom requested to see his license. He reaches in the pack, pulls out a license - though it was mine. He got cited for having wto license and the wouldn't buy or care about the reason for carrying my license.

acolytes
02-14-2008, 7:52 AM
I had a run in with DFG about 10 years ago or so. I wasn't hunting or shooting. I was camping with a friend because we were going offroading out in the middle of nowhere in the inland empire. I was sleeping in my truck with a loaded mak 90 in the passenger seat in case some tweekers decided to try anything. I forgot where we were since it was a loooong time ago, but people obviously shot out there because there were empty casings and shotgun shells all over the ground. I wake up to a flashlight in my face at 3 am and it was a dfg guy, he asked me if it was loaded, and I said yes, but I just loaded it before I went to sleep, otherwise its unloaded and in a case the whole time. My friend had a 9 mm handgun that was also loaded, and the dfg guy read off some penal code saying its illegal to have a loaded RIFLE in this area and only cited me. I went to court and on the paper work it said I had "a loaded automatic ak47" what a joke! The guy didnt even know what it was. I informed the judge it was a semi auto sporter rifle, not a full auto ak47. I got a public defender and told the guy I only had it for protection while i was sleeping out in the middle of nowhere. Plus I've never been in trouble with the law before. He struck a deal with the da and I got 3 years probation and paid $800 in "victims restitution" or something like that in fines. The DFG was a cocky pompous *****

Hunter
02-14-2008, 8:06 AM
...
Did you know that if you are in a public area, or even private property, and you are armed or have a "means of take" such as a bow, or spear, you are assumed to be hunting and subject to inspection by DFG.

They can inspect but they need to see you hunting to charge you with anything..ie poaching, not having license, ect... This has been the law for decades.


Figure this one out: If you are killing non-game animals, you are not hunting, but you still need a hunting license and are subject to inspection.

Well because you are still hunting. It doesn't matter if it is a "game" or "non game" species. The only time this would differ is if you obtained a depredation permit for your own property for a specific animal problem.


Did you know that you need a fishing license to kill a rattlesnake?

This is not true at all. One is exempt from needing a sport fishing license for rattlesnakes. But in general, reptiles are covered under the fishing regulations in this state. Same for frog hunting/gigging and other amphibians as well.


Did you know that if you are hunting or shooting and you place your loaded weapon in the bed of your parked truck, or lean it against your parked car you can be cited for having a loaded weapon in a vehicle?

The only time this doesn't apply is if the vehicle is stopped and PARKED away from any roadway, which includes the right of way for the road bed. But again, this also only applies to a round in the chamber, one can still have the magazine full (except in incorporated areas).

Pred@tor
02-14-2008, 9:30 AM
I got popped on my birthday for quail hunting back in 2006. 680.00 fine and I have a misdemeanor for it. At least I have my guns still but I was on some guys property that was not marked. If I would have fought it I would have been a felon. So the game warden was nice enough to us because we were young. She didn't arrest my buddy and I. (first time she let someone keep their guns too) We just were fined but the property owner was a creep he wanted us arrested. Thank god we were not arrested she told the guy to piss off. This guy had a real M16 too when he talked to my friend and I. He was ready to take names if he had to but he told us to deal with the sheriffs on the way out and be honest. I was honest and it helped a great deal.

GuyW
02-14-2008, 11:32 AM
They can inspect but they need to see you hunting to charge you with anything..ie poaching, not having license, ect... This has been the law for decades.


Not true. I had to go to Superior Ct in Vista with an attorney to prove that I was not hunting...and it was obvious I was not.

Many of these game wardens will cite on these ambiguous F&G codes, figuring that most will plea out, and at least they've caused you pain.

Don't trust any of the %^&* suckers...

11Z50
02-14-2008, 5:57 PM
They can inspect but they need to see you hunting to charge you with anything..ie poaching, not having license, ect... This has been the law for decades.



Well because you are still hunting. It doesn't matter if it is a "game" or "non game" species. The only time this would differ is if you obtained a depredation permit for your own property for a specific animal problem.



This is not true at all. One is exempt from needing a sport fishing license for rattlesnakes. But in general, reptiles are covered under the fishing regulations in this state. Same for frog hunting/gigging and other amphibians as well.



The only time this doesn't apply is if the vehicle is stopped and PARKED away from any roadway, which includes the right of way for the road bed. But again, this also only applies to a round in the chamber, one can still have the magazine full (except in incorporated areas).

You must be DFG...what did I say in my post? You say not true, but....in each case you can make up BS charges. Have a nice day Warden.

Salty
02-14-2008, 6:50 PM
I have never had any run in's with DFG, but I have a friend who was a warden for a number of years and he told me that most of them are bored out of there minds. He said that it wasn't uncommon for three months to pass with nothing more than a couple of vehicle related violations. My experience with bored cops (after living in a few small towns) is that they will cite or at least harass you for just about anything, presumably for self amusement / feeling of worth.

I solve problems for a living, and I can imagine that if I sat at my desk for 3 months without a single new problem that I’d overreact to the next big one that comes across my desk. Not that that makes it right, especially when you are dealing with peoples lives, but I understand why someone might react like that to negligible offenses.

I’m sure that there is also a certain portion of DFG employees that joined because they were anti-hunting & anti-fishing.

With that said, long term it’s probably better for there cause to educate people on small / unintended offenses rather than prosecute them. People who get bent over for small things tend to loose respect for authority.

For instance, my car once broke down right infront of a speed trap. After I pushed my car over to the side of the road the cop pulled up and gave me a BS ticket for “defective equipment”. The judge treated me like I was some kinda bum and gave me no sympathy, even after I showed her my $300 repair bill. I lost respect for law enforcement in my town for a long long time after that.

My Dad, who is deathly allergic to bee’s, once had one fly into his car on the highway. He pulled all the way over onto the shoulder and got out of the car for a few minutes, only to be cited for “stopping on the highway” or something like that by the first CHP that drove by. The judge showed no pity for my Dad either, even though he got a lawyer and a note from his doctor confirming his allergy. He now avoids cops like the plague, even when he needs their help.

In the same town, a friend of mine was arrested when she got pulled over for tailgating and the cop saw a baseball bat in the rear seat… even though it was accompanied by her little brother, in his baseball uniform, on the way home from practice. I don’t even need to tell you her opinion on law enforcement now…

Anyway, enough ranting… These were street cops, but they had the same mentality as the DFG wardens that have been described in this thread. If the DFG allows this mentality to continue and spread, people will eventually have the same opinion of them as they do street cops.
With that said, the few DFG wardens that I’ve run into (mostly for the “F” in DFG) have been nice folks.

Hunter
02-14-2008, 7:23 PM
You must be DFG...what did I say in my post? You say not true, but....in each case you can make up BS charges. Have a nice day Warden.

Are you for real?

You imply that you read the regulations/laws and from that you then wrote the following statement

..Did you know that you need a fishing license to kill a rattlesnake?
...

I then replied with the following statement

.This is not true at all. One is exempt from needing a sport fishing license for rattlesnakes. ....

Because if you had indeed read the regulations you would have read this F&G regulation on the taking of rattlesnakes


5.60. Reptiles. (a) General Provisions: Only the following reptiles may be taken under the authority of a sportfishing license, subject to the restrictions in this section. The limit for each of the species listed below is two, unless otherwise provided. Limit, as used in this section, means daily bag and possession limit. No reptiles shall be taken from ecological reserves designated by the commission in Section 630 or from state parks, or national parks or monuments. (b) No sportfishing license is required for the sport take of any rattlesnake. ..

Show me were I was wrong and I will correct it. Can you say the same?

Pred@tor
02-15-2008, 6:07 AM
Its so strange hunting rattle snakes require a fishing license.

11Z50
02-15-2008, 6:57 AM
OK, here we go.....

They can inspect but they need to see you hunting to charge you with anything..ie poaching, not having license, ect... This has been the law for decades.

My post only said DFG can contact and inspect you. I said nothing about charges, although being contacted and hassled is enough.

Well because you are still hunting. It doesn't matter if it is a "game" or "non game" species. The only time this would differ is if you obtained a depredation permit for your own property for a specific animal problem.

Again my comments are about how F&G law is written. Most people that shoot a sparrow or a blackbird in their backyard with a bb gun would not consider themselves to be hunting. According to DFG they are, and can be cited if they don't have a hunting license. Shooting "non-game" animals should not be considered hunting IMHO, but that is not the case. My comments were intended to enlighten readers who did not know about this.

This is not true at all. One is exempt from needing a sport fishing license for rattlesnakes. But in general, reptiles are covered under the fishing regulations in this state. Same for frog hunting/gigging and other amphibians as well.

I stand corrected, but in my experience, if a Warden observes a person killing a snake, you can bet he/she will contact the person, just to be sure the reptile was in fact a rattlesnake, and means of take was lawful.

The only time this doesn't apply is if the vehicle is stopped and PARKED away from any roadway, which includes the right of way for the road bed. But again, this also only applies to a round in the chamber, one can still have the magazine full (except in incorporated areas).

Again, read my post. I stated "a loaded weapon" which in my book means fully loaded, round in chamber. Most people who pull off the road do not pull all the way off the roadbed. Any roadway includes trails, and driveways into campsites. If one drove all the way off the roadbed one risks being cited for operating an OHV in a manner which destroys the environment.

Another poster mentioned that most Wardens are bored, and most LEOs that have little to do often harass citizens. I have known a few and would have to agree with that statement. Some of the Wardens I've interacted with were very professional and cordial. Others were downright obnoxious and overbearing. One, in particular, made a big deal about a kid he caught shooting non-game birds with a bb gun, and how he was going to file charges with the DA on the kid, and his parents. One would think a sworn LEO would have better things to do, and how it might have been more effective to just have a talk with the kid/parents. Instead, this Warden wasted his time, the DA's time, the court's time, and the parent's time and money over this insignificant offense.

Similar the the CHP, who are supposed to primarily enforce traffic laws, DFG Wardens are supposed to enforce, primarily, F&G laws. When CHP officers get bored, they harass shooters, as was the case in Los Banos a few weeks ago. When Wardens get bored, and start enforcing CVC and Penal code laws, they are not doing their primary jobs. If there isn't enough to do, lay some of the Wardens off. They can apply to be real cops somewhere else.