Montana's general big game rifle season came to a close this past Sunday with some grim and disgusting reports.

In one of the worst incidents of the season, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks tells us that game wardens are seeking information on four bull elk that were killed near Anaconda sometime during the next-to-last weekend of the season, November 18 or 19.

The incident occurred on the Ueland Ranch and ARCO Block Management Area near Anaconda, and it appears likely the same offenders did all the damage. The elk were killed in close proximity of each other and only the heads and backstraps were taken. The rest was left to waste.

In a separate incident, Montana FWP wardens are seeking information on a bull elk found shot and wasted on private land along a road in Musselshell County. Other hunters reported the elk to FWP this past Saturday. Wardens found the elk with a gunshot wound not far off the road. They determined that the elk had likely been shot sometime in the 24 hours prior.

Hunters are prohibited from wasting any part of a game animal that is suitable for food, including the tenderloins, backstraps and all of the four quarters. FWP urges us to remind people that wildlife crimes like these are often solved because of leads from the public and encourage anyone with information to make a report. To provide information about this case or other wildlife crimes, you can do so on the FWP TIP-MONT website page here,
or call hotline at 1-800-TIP-MONT (1-800-847-6668). Callers may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.

We hope it was a successful season for all of you responsible, law-abiding Montana hunters out there, and that hopefully these crimes will be solved.

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