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Tribal Conservation Officers

by Ray Schmidt
02/23/08 ┬ęSchmidt Outfitters 2008

A February 08' DNR news release reveals the following:

Due to the new tribal agreement, the back of each license will now have the following statement: "When hunting, trapping or fishing, you must carry your license and the identification used to purchase that license, and must exhibit both upon demand of a conservation officer, a tribal conservation officer, or any other law enforcement officer."

Upon receiving this news release I called the DNR Law Enforcement Division and discussed this new development.

Here's the deal: The reason that tribal conservation officers have this new privilege is that they are looking to identify tribal members hunting, fishing, or trapping. It was explained to me that a tribal conservation officer only has the right to ask and look at a non-tribal member's license and I.D. When produced by the person, the tribal officer can take no action of any kind if the person is not a tribal member.

The only way a tribal conservation officer or any tribal law enforcement officer can take any action with non-tribal members is if that officer has been deputized by that county's Sheriff.

The public has the right to ask for that information from any law enforcement officer, local, county, state, or federal.

I personally don't think this new development is a problem. It may even help having more uniformed people in our outdoors with watchful eyes.

Know and understand you rights when hunting, fishing or trapping.

If you have any questions regarding this news release please contact the DNR.