Wisconsin Poaching Scheme Exposed

Four long-time hound hunters who have run their dogs in pursuit of bear, mountain lion, bobcat for decades are now identified as poachers after they were convicted of crimes related to illegal lion hunting in Montana.  The four men were charged with Lacey Act violations in addition to other charges related to killing a mountain lion while hunting near Mosby, Montana.  The Lacey Act was applied to the case because the violators broke Montana laws and crossed from one state to another with their illegally taken lion.


Two of the men were ordered to pay fines of $5,000 each and, “as a condition of probation, a ban on hunting, trapping, running dogs or assisting and/or accompanying others who are engaged in hunting, trapping or running dogs worldwide for two years.”

One of the men was ordered to pay  $25,000 in fines and serve a three-year term of probation. the leader of the scheme was ordered to pay $30,000 in fines and serve a four-year term of probation. These two hunters also” lost the privilege to hunt, trap, run dogs or assist and/or accompany others engaged in hunting, trapping or running dogs worldwide.”

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Montana Hunter Advancement Program Seeks Landowner Cooperators

The Montana Hunter Advancement Program is a  new Montana Access Program Developed by Landowners.

25 hunters have been certified through the 2018 50 hour Advanced Hunter Educations Pilot Course.  We have had a great response among Montana’s landowners for participation in this program and we are interested in adding more landowners to the program before the fall 2018 hunting seasons begin.

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The First 25 Graduates from the Montana Hunter Advancement Program

Montana Hunter Advancement Program
Ethics, Access, and Education
The Montana Hunter Advancement Program promotes safe, ethical, and responsible hunting through its focused “Master Hunter” certification program, offered in partnership with forward-thinking private landowners across the state.

25 Montana hunters have successfully completed our first-ever 50+ hour continuing education course, passing an exhaustive written exam and a field marksmanship and ballistics course led by Jason & Jordan at 406 Precision.
These dedicated individuals are ready for hunting season this coming fall and beyond, as we build our team of ethical hunters. These folks are on a mission to improve landowner – sportsmen relations in Montana!

How you can help:
• Refer a landowner to our program. We are actively seeking out additional access partnerships.
• Make a contribution. Every penny counts as we continue building this first-of-its-kind advanced hunting education, ethics, and access program.
• Tell your friends. We will soon be accepting applications for the 2019 course opportunities
Be in touch!

The Common Ground group believes that hunting is a privilege and not a right; and although it has been criticized by some, it is an important part of our Nation’s heritage and wildlife management system. As both land ownership and hunter behavior have changed, hunting access has become more limited and contentious. In an attempt to improve landowner-sportsmen relations as well as create more access opportunities for hunters, Common Ground is now developing this comprehensive, advanced hunter education program designed to put more ethical, educated, and effective hunters in the field.

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Good Elk Hunting Leads to Conflict in SW Montana

Southwest Montana is known for it’s elk and public access to thousands of acres of state and federal land as well as access to private lands through programs such as Montana FWP’s Block Management Program.  As elk numbers increase, so do hunter numbers.  As hunter numbers increase so do the few mischief-makers who shoot up signs, vandalize (or remove) forest signs and travel route designations, tear up roads which are too wet for reasonable travel  and trespass on private property.   As one landowner and his wife who have ranched in the are for more than 50 years recently commented, “It’s the 5% of the hunters who spoil it for the good ones.  Fortunately, a lot of thoughtful, respectful and just “good” hunters still come to the area.  We welcome these hunters to our property.”

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