Three Utah County men are facing citations after trespassing on private property to collect shed antlers last weekend.
Utah Division of Wildlife Resources conservation officers received a tip on April 24 that three men were gathering shed antlers — without written permission — on private property in the Chalk Creek area in Summit County.
Conservation officers responded and located the truck the men were traveling in. After they finished gathering antlers, officers were waiting for them. Anyone gathering shed antlers must have written permission from the landowner before entering that landowner’s property to gather antlers.
“The area where the men entered is clearly marked with ‘no trespassing’ signs,” DWR Conservation Officer Jeremy Wilcox said. “They told me they knew the land was private property, but they spotted an elk shed off the road and said ‘they couldn’t resist’ getting it. They then remained on the property for hours, scouring the area for more antlers.”
The men gathered 30 antlers total: 19 elk, seven deer and four moose. DWR officers estimate a shed antler buyer would likely have paid up to $1,500 for the 30 antlers.
In addition to losing the antlers, each man faces a fine of up to $680 for unlawful take/possession while trespassing, a class B misdemeanor. They could also lose their privilege to hunt big game in Utah for up to three years. If they lose their privileges in Utah, they’ll also lose them in 48 other states that participate with Utah in the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact. <https://wildlife.utah.gov/know-consequences.html>
“We’re patrolling and people are watching,” Wilcox said. “Please don’t trespass on private property to gather shed antlers. It’s illegal, and the price you could pay just isn’t worth it.”
If you spot someone illegally gathering shed antlers on private property, please call Utah’s Turn-In-a-Poacher hotline at 1-800-662-DEER (3337). You can also submit a report online.