SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, May 10, 2022 — The state’s game wardens would like to remind people to be kind to their feathered friends this time of year and avoid blundering into their habitats.
The same goes for bigger critters, too.
The advisory comes after the state Division of Wildlife Resources issued 14 citations in April for trespassing in closed wildlife management areas.
The closures cover a “critical time for ducks, geese and other birds that migrate through Utah this time of year. Many of the birds stop at Utah’s wetland areas — many of which are waterfowl management areas — to rest and feed before continuing their migration north.
“Some of the birds stay in Utah to nest and raise their young. These areas are closed during this time of year to help protect the nesting and migrating birds.”
As far as the big game, the citations in the management areas for deer, etc. included seven issued to people target-shooting at the Henefer-Echo WMA during the closure period, according to the DWR statement, but typically the majority of the citations result from people trespassing on the properties while hiking or biking.
January to mid-April is the most critical time of the year for deer in Utah, the DWR said. In addition to being weak after a long winter, deer are transitioning from eating a diet of browse (brush and twigs) to eating mostly green grasses. It takes time for their delicate digestive system to make the switch, and the deer aren’t receiving much nutrition from the food they’re eating.
“Combine a lack of nutrition with being weak after a long winter, and it’s easy to see how critical it is that people not cause the deer added stress.”