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Young Girl Shoots Elk for Deer in Mo
A 14-year-old Missouri girl spotted giant antlers and pulled the trigger, thinking she had just nabbed a white-tailed buck, only to discover the animal was an elk — an innocent mistake that some social media users have bullied her about, her father said.
I feel bad for the young lady.......it's a tough way to learn this lesson. I think she should get a pass personally. Maybe she should have had someone hunting with her.....but I for sure let all my kids hunt alone when they were 14.
Why would you take a trophy photo of something accidentally shot and post it on social media ???
Is it just me, or is there something wrong with the fact she is hunting alone and doesn't know enough to know the difference between an elk and a deer........
"Why would you take a trophy photo of something accidentally shot and post it on social media ???"
And for that I blame her PARENTS. In fact, 5555 also makes a real valid point about her hunting alone. When I was that age I always had an adult with me in the stand.
I blame the parents AND the Conservation Officer..... He should have made that into a teaching session..... not posing for a trophy photo with the young lady with an elk that technically..... was poached....
When I was 14, my brothers and I were out hunting for deer after school, while Dad didn't get home until well after dark. I made mistakes and learned from them. The first and only gut-shot deer was my second one when I was 15. I promised myself to never make that mistake again. But I'm sure that I didn't brag to anyone about the mistakes that I made, though they weren't published in the paper, either.
At 14 I didn't know what an Elk was because we didn't have any in Appalachia, had deer and squirrel though.
Should we have to memorize every animal on the continent to get Hunter safety certified?
First Doe at 12 with my Grandpa and was hunting alone after that and already squirrel hunted alone.
What age should the Government decide kids are responsible enough to hunt alone?
"He said the “crazy” incident has led to “hatred [toward] a child.”
“Everyone is a keyboard hero these days."
Interesting that her dad would say that. Twenty dollars says there is more to the story than what is written. Also - no elk season, just growing a herd. Poaching is taking an animal out of season or exceeding a bag limit. Be interesting to see what the statute is in MO for shooting an animal with no season or permits even available...
Seems like a comprehensive story to me....
I could clearly see the problem in this one line.
“When I put my post up on Facebook yes I was a excited Dad"
Otherwise I see no problems with this accident.
If an adult made the mistake I'm certain a violation would have been issued...... Just because there isn't a season for them there doesn't mean that it isn't a violation to shoot one..... And accidentally mistaking one for a deer doesn't negate the violation............ I said the Consevation Officer should have handled it as a learning lesson for all involved...... Instead of issuing a citation he could have simply confiscated the elk. But to take trophy photos And allowing them to appear on line is a mistake in my opinion....
We have some moose in Michigan..... but NO moose hunting...... It is a HUGE game violation to shoot one... call it poaching or call it a game violation...... it's illegal....... mistakingly shooting one is still illegal.....
Several years ago a bear was killed in northern Illinois - nothing happened to the guy because there were no laws against it....since there were no bears in Illinois, similar a wolf was shot in Pike county Illinois - same thing - individual thought it was a coyote, he was not prosecuted for the same reason.
There are now laws (Illinois) you can not shoot wolves, bears or cougars (even though there aren't any) and if you do you will be fined accordingly.
If I remember correctly a guy in Macoupin county (Illinois) also shot an elk with his bow last year. It was said to have escaped from a game farm somewhere in the area.
If there is no law on the books, she is home free - if there is - she can be fined - or leave it to the discretion of the officer. I assumed it was a law everywhere that a youth had to be adult supervised during a firearm season. That one should be enforced if in fact it is the case.
They do have a small herd of elk in Missouri that was introduced.... I'm sure they are protected until the herd is large enough to have a hunt..... We have a very limited elk hunt in Michigan and Kentucky has the same thing..... Our DNR didn't admit that we had cougars for years...... But they made it illegal to shoot one in Michigan....
This elk was 200 miles from the only elk herd in Missouri. I'm not saying she shouldn't get a ticket.......but she already learned a big lesson. She is a minor but she was hunting legally and I'm thinking there should be a way to handle this within the system without causing her lifetime problems and get it done and behind her.
That's what I said from the beginning..... The C.O. Should have given her a pass..... confiscated the elk... and not taken trophy photos to be posted all over the internet.....
so i guess everyone who kills an elk illegally in MO will get a pass if the DNR is fair about it.
That's why the elk MUST be confiscated.......
Missouri code is permissive, everything else is illegal.
The dad is the idiot and they will end up paying for his stupidity as it goes viral.
What do you mean Missouri code is permissive... everything else is illegal ??
When I was 14 I had been killing deer for years and hunted alone. I was killing squirrels with a 22 rifle before I was old enough to go to school, My dad would put me near a hickory tree and go off 100 yards or so. My grand father taught me how to skin them by cutting them at the base of the tail, standing on the tail and pulling up. No hair on the squirrel and way faster than cutting them across the back. The young lady probably learned her lesson.
The first year they opened a game reserve near my house two guys from Baltimore took an animal to the check station to register it. The shooter got fined and had to pay the property owner for his goat. The property owner was a Hungarian named Mike and his house had a dirt floor and was very small. He was a really good guy and I liked him. That area is where I learned what moonshine is.
"When I was 14 I had been killing deer for years and hunted alone."
Yeah but that was back in the olden days when you lived to see 25 you were middle aged so...
I did the same thing when I was a kid - I would go pheasant hunting (dove quail). Hell I didn't even know there was a season for anything, we lived in a rural area.
The elk was 200 miles from where it was supposed to be. The elk were introduced just a few years ago and not too many people think of them when they are hunting yet. I understand the mistake. Shoot, I even understand why they took the picture although I agree posting it on social media was pretty silly . I grew up in SW MO and was squirrel hunting by myself by the time I was 8, and deer hunting alone at 12 (not that there were very many deer around back then).
I am actually rather surprised at the keyboard criticisms about this incident on this site.
I have heard of lots of people shooting the wrong thing......swans during goose season and wood ducks during teal season. One of my good friends is a Missouri conservation agent......there are lots of real pre-meditated poachers in Missouri.
"What do you mean Missouri code is permissive... everything else is illegal ??"
The code tells you what animal, methods, etc. is permitted. If not permitted you cannot do it.
"I am actually rather surprised at the keyboard criticisms about this incident on this site."
Government indoctrination is the cause of many of the comments.
I don't consider myself old but I am prior to mandatory hunter ed.
Woodguy 65, when I was a kid, squirrel season was when they started cutting hickory nuts.
K Cummings's Link
That's not a deer?
"A young Missouri hunter who shot an elk by mistake won't get to keep the meat, hide or big antlers.
Abby Wilson, 14, shot the elk on Saturday in Boone County, thinking it was a large white-tailed buck. Her father, Donald White, immediately called the Conservation Department upon realizing his daughter's mistake.
White said he later spoke with conservation officials in hopes they would let her keep the antlers, cape and meat, which he said would be shared with his family.
"I'd make sure everybody around my family would have some of that," said White, who was nearby but not with Abby when she killed the bull elk with a single shot from her .243-caliber rifle.
"As I understand it, they (MDC) hold the rights to any game in Missouri," White said. "We got a good relationship going with them, so we hope something positive comes out of it."
MDC is refrigerating the elk carcass and may donate the meat to needy families if it passes its CWD test.
Abby's story went viral Monday, with hundreds of people posting comments about her mistaking an elk for a white-tailed deer. White said he was upset by some of the comments that he felt amounted to bullying his young daughter over her mistake.
"There's no sense in it, people doing that," he said. "Don't come at my daughter saying lock her away. Wow. If my daughter gets fined, I'll pay it and move on. So be it. We'll deal with it."
As of Tuesday, conservation officials had not finished their investigation into the unusual case and had not decided if any warnings or citations would be issued."
Sounds like an honest mistake, and it was handled well by the father and daughter. Hopefully it will be treated as such.
A young hunter who did not know that there could be an antlered animal present that was not a legal deer. Honest mistake.
(good one shot kill!)
I agree 100% that there should not have been a photo and they They should not get to keep the animal.
A warning citation seems appropriate in this case - with encouragement for the young lady to try again next year.
"We have some moose in Michigan..... but NO moose hunting...... It is a HUGE game violation to shoot one..."
We have no moose in NM, but the game laws do read that if it is a protected game animal in another state that requires a permit to hunt, you cannot shoot it if it wanders in from CO. That's why I said it would be interesting to see what the law in MO reads.
In 2009 a guy in Montana shot a llama thinking it was an elk.
There is a game farm in the area the elk was killed in. The place is called High Adventure Ranch or something like that. It's a canned hunt operation. I hunt in the Boone County area sometimes and have heard elk bugling in the morning, but not for a number of years now. I wonder if this one escaped that game ranch or if it migrated north from the Peck Ranch area...
Well, after looking it up, I guess the High Adventure Ranch is further south than I thought. Still does not negate the fact that I have heard bugles in the Boone County area more than once, but not for a while now. I always thought it was due to the game ranch, but now I see the ranch is 100+ miles south of there. The Missouri River does run right through there. Interesting...
Don't know why full grown adults would pick on a little girl, but then it is the internet and pretty much anything goes I guess....
Reminds me of a couple guys we met elk hunting in 2001 (Right after 9/11). They were from Missouri and they had to stop at an elk farm on the way out to AZ because they didn't know what an elk looked like LOL. They didn't even know about the 9/11 attack because they left MIss on Monday and I believe the attack happened on Tuesday. Said they didn't have a radio on the whole trip.
She should have received a ticket, and the parents a kick in the ass for letting her hunt alone, if that was the case.... confiscate the elk and no damn pics for the facebook crap .....
My oldest daughter turns 14 in 2 months. I don't think I'd let her hunt alone, especially with a gun. But this year was her first year hunting. Perhaps when she's 16. Perhaps if she'd been shooting small game with a .177 or .22 since she was younger.
Also, we have a few youth cow hunts here in AZ and every year, about 5-6 spikes are inadvertently shot by the youth hunters. Most of the time it is low light situations. They take the spikes and donate the meat and the child loses their tag. As far as the young lady above, I just cant understand why dad was not right next to his daughter on this.
Based on what I seen of the story, I would give the girl a pass, BUT I would have a serious talk with the father. A simple mistake, nothing more.
I started hunting alone when I was 8 or 9. 410 or .22 single shots...killed lots of rabbits, pheasant, quail and squirrels with those guns. Dad taught me how to clean them and mom would cook them...8^)
We cannot let a minor (under 18) hunt alone in NM - state law - which means the jr hunter needs to be within normal voice distance, 30 ft or so, of an adult...
as far as I know, there are NO wild elk in Missouri! ..... so, I can see giving the young girl a 'pass' on this ..... although, she should know what her quarry actually looks like and be positive of her target before pulling the trigger! ......jmho
There are wild elk in Missouri.
yes there are lots of wild elk in MO. so giving them a pass sets precedent that anyone who kills one of the transplanted elk gets a pass.
actually, they are talking about starting an elk season in missouri within the next few years. It will be like winning the lotto to get a tag but there will be hunters taking elk legally in Missouri soon.
None of this would ever happen if people would just stay the hell off facebook. She would've gotten a ticket, elk taken away, and the rest of the world would be none the wiser. When you go on facebook you open yourself (and your life) to scrutinizing by the rest of the world...so, you kind of get what you got coming until you learn to have the will power not to let facebook brainwash you into thinking you need to air out your life.
I to was sitting along in a deer stand by the time I was 14. With an bow and a shotgun for that matter. But I also knew what an elk, moose, whitetail, and mule deer looked like!
I just merely feel it was irresponsible for the father to let her hunt alone with that lack of knowledge. I have to wonder what other hunting "rules" that we all take for granted, was she not aware of..... I am just reminded of the newbie hunter around here a few years ago who saw movement and thought it was a deer. He shot and killed the guy with an arrow who brought him hunting. The guy was walking back to pick the kid up and leave..... I'm thinking she may have been lucky it was just an elk......
I'm sure glad none of you guys made mistakes with your kids. :) A mistake was made, the law was called immediately. They handled it in the best possible manner they could in my opinion. Everyone is talking about it, that's how education works. Due to this incident it probably will not happen again. That's my 2 cents worth, some of you guys can go back to bashing a 14 year old girl and her dad who's taking her hunting for making a mistake if that's your thing.
They handled it the best possible way........ until they posted a trophy photo on the internet....
Has anyone contacted MO game and fish to find out the particulars of what THEIR STATE law says about illegally taking an elk? Seems like a lot of speculation going on as to what the legality of the case is...
actually, there no speculation about the illegality of the case. As stated above in Missouri you have a permit to take a single deer and nothing else. Zero. Anything that is not a deer and not "small game" that you have a permit for and that is in season is against the law to shoot.
I agree with illegal when your permit reads "one buck deer only" and you shoot a doe, because a doe is protected under law and at the time of your hunt there was no doe season. So why the odd outcome of shooting the elk "out of season" especially when there is no season, and no permit even available? Illegal, yeah, sorta. Seems like a gray area really...
If you read back through this thread it was pointed out that in Missouri..... it is illegal to shoot any animal that you don't have a tag for......... Besides..... if Missouri has imported elk with the hopes of establishing a huntable population.... I'm quite certain they are going to have laws in place to protect them...... I'll look it up for you if I must........
There's no season or permit available for moose in Michigan..... so why don't you come up here and shoot one..... I'll come and visit you in jail..... Why is this so hard to comprehend ???
From mdc .mo.gov. A small population of elk is present in southern Missouri. Elk are not legal game during the prescribed deer hunting seasons.........
It’s very clear the girl broke the law. The girl is 14. I don’t think her punishment should be throwing her in a reform school till she is 18. I am betting the flak she is catching on social media is going to have a bearing on how she handles herself later in years.
A young person made a mistake. Her world revolves around social media. No need to throw the book at her.
"There's no season or permit available for moose in Michigan..... so why don't you come up here and shoot one..... I'll come and visit you in jail....."
Sigh - go back up and read one of my posts...
"Why is this so hard to comprehend ???"
Explain the light hearted handling of the situation if it were a serious poaching game law violation? Yes, the regs say that the tag was for a deer being defined as a whitetail or mule deer. Yes, this means you cannot shoot an elk with it. Yes, elk are being reintroduced and do not currently have a management program through hunting - yet. Does MO have a similar law as MI or NM does for moose, or any other [game] species for that matter to make it illegal, or is MO law interpreted to encompass it by implied default ? If it does, ok then. But sorry BIG BEAR, just ain't gonna take your word for it...
The problem I have are the "keyboard heros" that say POACHER! LOUSY NO GOOD ROTTEN FILTH...
Dude... did you read the post 2 posts above yours from Mo.gov...... elk are not legal game in Missouri.....
The problem I have in the entire incident is the lack of guidance from her dad. It was a mistake.... Nontheless it was an illegally taken elk..... The proper response was to NOT take trophy photos of it.... It should have simply been turned over to the C.O. Her dad should have made 100% sure that it did not appear on the internet........
Not only did her dad NOT do that.... He is now lobbying to get the meat and cape and horns. If the DNR gives it to them ..... every Tom, Dick and Harry is gonna want the exact same treatment when they go out and shoot one of the elk that Missouri spent probably millions of dollars to import from the Rocky Mountains....
"Dude... did you read the post 2 posts above yours from Mo.gov...... elk are not legal game in Missouri....."
I combed through the website and found the stuff on elk but failed to see where it explicitly says anything about elk not being legal - could've missed it though. Only found the part about them not being managed through hunting yet.
So, if someone somehow shoots a pronghorn in MO (doesn't matter how it got there) it would be poaching, in MO? So, there would be a law stating that, right? Or just not listing it as legal game makes it illegal? Just thinking out loud...
My understanding is the CO helped take the photo. That would seem to indicate that all parties involved were pretty shocked there was an elk anywhere remotely close. Not just the girl..... EVERYBODY. I would say an honest mistake in the heat of the moment. She kept it together and put a good lick on him too. The tag was for whitetail or muley I think? That was a piss horn rag bull, not some easy to see 300+ monster. I've shot axis bigger.
Good grief...... let it go. With folks like some around I would't be surprised if she never wanted to ever go hunting again. Great job people. In reality if this is the biggest mistake she makes at 14 she'll be doing good.
WRT 14-15 I was loading my .243 and 7mm mag shells and operating heavy equipment all summer to make money to support my gun habit at that age. Bought and paid for 4 or five guns plus access to what the family had and the RCBS reloading gear myself. If anybody told me I had to be accompanied by an "adult" to go hunting I would have told you go pizz up a rope.
Adults hunting for the first time have made the same mistake.
Look..... I said to give her a pass from the very start.... I simply expressed my concerns that her father AND the Conservation Officer handled it all wrong..... And they are going to make matters worse if they turn the elk back over to the girl and her father....... In limited draw elk states like Kentucky and Michigan...... and soon in Missouri....... getting an elk tag is a once in a lifetime draw. I've been putting in for 13 years for a tag and chances are I will never draw one...... and that is the norm......... So what do you tell guys who have been putting in for a decade or two who see an elk accidentally shot in deer season.... and they give the elk to the shooter and give a warning ?? There's a real good chance that a lot of deer hunters will see an elk in deer season in Northern Michigan...... Do you think that any of them will shoot an elk on purpose and demand the same treatment ??? OK... I will let it go now....
A 14 year old NEEDS someone to hunt with them? Gimme a break, is this the CF? I was 13 and bowhunting on my own, and never had anyone in my family show me anything about hunting. Could she have used a little more thorough instruction? I don't know maybe, but that age is old enough to have some responsibility for yourself. In many states you are legally behind the wheel of a car within a year.
Every kid is different. By the time I was 14 I had been hunting on my own for a few years and running tractors and trucks on the farm. I know 14 year-old kids now who can't be trusted to do anything on their own. The fact that she mistook an elk for a whitetail strongly suggests she was not ready to hunt by herself. It's her dad's responsibility to make sure she understands game laws and what is and is not a proper target and safe shot. He failed her. Hopefully they both learned from this and start to hunt more responsibly.
And yes HDE, if it is not listed as legal game it is not legal to shoot it. Big game hunting regulations are for specific species.
When you guys were 14 was like 60 years ago.......... ha !!!!
I wonder if they can do a DNA check on this elk and determine if it came from the restoration project or if it migrated down the Missouri river. Be interesting to find out where it came from. I assume the DNR will try to figure this out...
45 years for me. Seems like last week ;)
I literally camped out without adult supervision when I was 5. When I was 14 I drove around in a car like I had a drivers license.
They had cars when you were 14....?? Ha !!!! Just kidding....
It was a brand new 1970 Camaro. I consider myself both lucky and good to have gotten away with it all.
Big Bear it was only 42 years ago for me. In Southwest Missouri. I had never seen an elk either. ;) I was also driving a Willis jeep alone up and down the county road at age 12 headed either to the hay field to drive the tractor or haul hay, to the pond to camp out, or hunting sometimes with the .22 PISTOL I paid for with my own money.
I think this article from Reason talks to the point a few of you make here.....
"One day last year, a citizen on a prairie path in the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst came upon a teen boy chopping wood. Not a body. Just some already-fallen branches. Nonetheless, the onlooker called the cops.
Officers interrogated the boy, who said he was trying to build a fort for himself and his friends. A local news site reports the police then "took the tools for safekeeping to be returned to the boy's parents."
Elsewhere in America, preschoolers at the Learning Collaborative in Charlotte, North Carolina, were thrilled to receive a set of gently used playground equipment. But the kids soon found out they would not be allowed to use it, because it was resting on grass, not wood chips. "It's a safety issue," explained a day care spokeswoman. Playing on grass is against local regulations.
And then there was the query that ran in Parents magazine a few years back: "Your child's old enough to stay home briefly, and often does. But is it okay to leave her and her playmate home while you dash to the dry cleaner?" Absolutely not, the magazine averred: "Take the kids with you, or save your errand for another time." After all, "you want to make sure that no one's feelings get too hurt if there's a squabble."
The principle here is simple: This generation of kids must be protected like none other. They can't use tools, they can't play on grass, and they certainly can't be expected to work through a spat with a friend.
And this, it could be argued, is why we have "safe spaces" on college campuses and millennials missing adult milestones today. We told a generation of kids that they can never be too safe—and they believed us."
Forgot the Link...
"Today many kids are raised like veal. Only 13 percent of them even walk to school. Many who take the bus wait at the stop with parents beside them like bodyguards. For a while, Rhode Island was considering a bill that would prohibit children from getting off the bus in the afternoon if there wasn't an adult waiting to walk them home. This would have applied until seventh grade."
I'm sorry Gerald.... I'm one of those protective parents who won't let my 11 year old daughter walk alone 4 city blocks to go to school...... There's a 20 some year old young lady in our area who has been missing for over a year. Everything points to her being dead... but the body has not been found.... The main suspect in the case is currently in jail for attempting to abduct a young lady on a walking path and rape her.........but she got away. That was after the first girl went missing......... And the missing girl has a little sister..... her sister is best friends with my hunting buddies daughter..... I don't give a danged if people think I'm overprotective.... I'm a cop.... I see the worst of humanity on a regular basis.
BIG BEAR, I agree with you 101%. May 2016 a 12 yr old girl in our community was kidnapped, raped, and killed (bludgeoned to death) on her way home from the bus stop. Her younger brother was with her and miraculously allowed to get out of the van he used some 20 miles from town then he drove further down the road to do his thing. No harm in being an over protective parent. For the remainder of the school year, kids couldn't get off the bus without a parent/guardian to meet them. It was for kids sake of feeling secure more than anything else...
When I was 14, I did have a driver's license, but had been driving on the farm for several years. I know that I shot my first rabbit by the time I was 5 (was with my dad). I do not remember when I was first allowed to take a gun by myself.
I see nothing wrong with a properly trained 14 year old being alone while hunting.
You don't have to be sorry, especially being a cop you would naturally be very fearful and overprotective. I am also aware that many of you live in bad neighborhoods where people are raped and murdered all the time like is seen on the news.
That is not my experience, just stuff I see on TV or on cop shows....
The suspect in the case of the missing girl here just plead guilty to kidnapping and attempted rape in the second case....in exchange for dropping the attempted murder charge in that case... he is being sentenced to 16-35 years in prison.... Now that they have him maybe he will run his mouth to another inmate as to where the body of the missing girl is....