Even prior to the pandemic, enforcement staff in the outdoors were spread too few and far between, as wardens in many states including North Dakota are tasked with patrolling multiple counties and thousands of square miles by themselves. When a violation was called in on the far side of their region, sometimes it took an hour or more for them and even local law enforcement to arrive on the scene to begin the investigation.
Due to that fact and more so now with increased use of the outdoors by many in our current times, part of the responsibility of keeping honest sportsmen honest still falls to the watchful eyes of fellow hunters. With the prevalence of cellular technology and nearly every phone having a camera on it, the citizen-hunter has never been a more integral part of the observational and enforcement aspect of preserving our natural resources. The responsibility falls to those men and women in the field to keep a
watchful eye for violations and to share with law enforcement the things they observe in the field, hear at the local watering hole, or discover on their morning scroll through social media.
As hunting seasons open in earnest, commit the phone number of your local warden to your contact list and be certain to have North Dakota’s Report All Poachers (RAP) line at the ready: 701-328-9921.
Sportsmen fill in the gaps, police their own, and help put a stop to criminal activity that hinders the use of - and may cause future restrictions to - hunting opportunities in our state.