(Update: Adding video, comments by anti-poaching group, local outfitter)
SISTERS, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Oregon State Police said Sunday they are seeking the public's help in identifying whoever shot and killed three elk and left them to waste near Highway 126 and Quail Tree Drive in the Dry Canyon area east of Sisters.
Troopers said an investigation determined all three elk were most likely shot on opening day of the East Central Cascade elk hunting season (Wednesday, Oct. 28 through Sunday, Nov. 1).
All three elk were located in fairly close proximity, OSP said.
One mature bull elk had the head and antlers removed and only the two front shoulders salvaged. A spike bull elk and cow elk were shot and left to waste approximately 40 yards apart.
Yvonne Shaw, the campaign coordinator for "Stop Poaching" in Oregon, drew a distinction Monday between legal hunting and poaching.
"When we're looking at poaching any time, we're looking at people who have no regards for ethics or fair chase," Shaw said. "I just want to make it clear that poaching and hunting are not the same. They are not the same thing, people doing those."
Shaw explained the effects of the illegal action.
"Anytime somebody poaches an animal, not only does it take it out of its own ecosystem, but it takes it away from opportunities for us as Oregonians to experience them," she said.
Leonard Langley, who owns Keystone Ranch Outfitters near Prineville, is upset about the local poaching case, one of several recently around the state.
"It makes me sick, because we have a hard enough problem with the cougars coyotes and the highway," Langley said. "The highway that we see over the last 20 years takes so many animals, it's unbelievable."
"When some human goes and just slaughters three, wastes the meat -- it just makes you sick," he said.
Anyone with information on the incident is encouraged to contact the Oregon State Police TIP (Turn In Poachers) number at 1-800-452-7888 or OSP and leave information for Senior Trooper Creed Cummings.
Information can also be provided at the following website https://www.oregon.gov/osp/programs/fw/Pages/tip.aspx or the TIP information below.
Report Wildlife and Habitat Law Violators
The TIP program offers preference point rewards for information leading to an arrest or issuance of a citation for the unlawful take/possession or waste of big game mammals.
Preference Point Rewards:
5 Points-Bighorn Sheep
5 Points-Rocky Mountain Goat
Or the Oregon Hunters Association TIP reward fund also offers cash rewards for information leading to an arrest or issuance of a citation for the unlawful take/possession or waste of Bighorn Sheep, Rocky Mountain Goat, Moose, Elk, Deer, Antelope, Bear, Cougar, Wolf, Upland Birds, Waterfowl, Furbearers, Game Fish and Shellfish. Cash rewards can also be awarded for turning in people who destroy habitat, illegally obtain licenses/tags and for the unlawful lending/borrowing of big game tags.
$1,000 Bighorn Sheep, Rocky Mountain Goat and Moose
$500 Elk, Deer and Antelope
$300 Bear, Cougar and Wolf
$300 Habitat Destruction
$200 Illegally Obtaining License/Tag(s)
$200 Unlawful Lend/Borrow Big Game Tags(s)
$100 Upland Birds and Waterfowl
$100 Game Fish and Shellfish
How to Report a Wildlife and/or Habitat Law Violation or Suspicious Activity:
TIP Hotline: 1-800-452-7888 or OSP(677)
TIP E-Mail: TIP@state.or.us (Monitored M-F 8:00AM - 5:00PM)