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‘Road kill’ is an unnecessary waste

To the editor: We, like many of the folks here in Prineville, are hunters that thoroughly enjoy the delicious taste of a venison meal. This letter is designed to inform the community of public servant neglect, wrongdoing, waste and hopefully light a fire under our behinds to do the right thing —- help change the law! Yesterday, we were sickened by a large bodied spike/fork buck groping for its last few minutes of life after having been struck by a vehicle moments earlier on lower Davis Loop road near Highlands Subdivision junction at Akins road. Even though in the rut, it still amazes us how an intelligent buck can escape numerous rifle and bow hunters for sometimes years, only to get smashed in a split second. I immediately called home on my cell phone and asked Sheila to call the Sheriff’s office while the animal was still alive. They said they would send someone out right away. Fish & Wildlife also said they would send someone out to pick it up right away and that we could kill it but not touch it. The buck was struck about 12:40 p.m. and died on its own about 12:45 p.m. After not seeing an officer by 1:00 p.m., we called the Sheriff’s office again and this time they said it would take awhile before an officer could make it. He showed up at 2:00 p.m. and said there was nothing he could do, that he didn’t know what kind of toxins could have been in the buck from internal injuries and that he would contact Fish & Wildlife. Even though we are not veterinarians, we’re reasonably certain that if this animal would have been cared for right away, it would have been excellent eating. We were assured that authorities were on the way so this waste would have been prevented. We could have taken the dead deer to our nearby home after notifying the police and taken care of it so that it would have not been wasted. This would have given officials the opportunity to find a home for it. Let’s introduce a law that would allow a citizen to call authorities and be granted a control number prior to removing game so that game can be properly cared for without fear of jail time for doing the right thing by not wasting good food? We understand that public servants aren’t paid extra to do things that aren’t in their job description even though it benefits the community, but this response demonstrates negligence and credibility is lost for other public servants when they tell community members they’re going to do something, then don’t. Because it is wrong to waste our state’s resources, should this be handled like a hunter-game violation and prosecute negligent public servants? —- of course not! We’re not upset about the fact that we will have to look at a bone-picked carcass for the next several weeks that was never picked up as promised. We would be willing to guess many other folks in this community and other communities have found themselves in a similar situation at one time or another —- and that this is nothing out of the ordinary but actually fairly common. We would also be willing to guess that if there was a law introduced, such as what we’ve described, people would not go running out to jump in their rigs so they could smash them up in hopes to get some venison for their neighbor. By now it should be obvious to all of us that public servants and the community need to work on a solution to prevent this frustrating type of waste ... the kind of waste that provokes good people into taking matters upon themselves, risking possible jail-time for trying to do the right thing. We will place a petition in the Prineville 7-Eleven store located at 405 NE Third Street for members of our community and other communities to sign with the intent to help change our law. Thank you for your support! John Wakeman-owner Sheila Clauson-manager Prineville 7-Eleven