DWR reminds citizens that trespassing on protected lands harms Utah’s animals

Apr 13, 2022, 1:55 PM | Updated: 2:10 pm

SALT LAKE CITY –– Trespassers, including hikers and bikers, are encroaching on critical Utah wildlife protection areas during the most critical time of year for the animals, according to Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources.

The DWR said it has cited 14 people for trespassing on wildlife and waterfowl management areas during season closures. Seven of this year’s citations were issued to target shooters but the DWR said typically the majority of the citations are from trespassers who are hiking and biking..

With fees gathered from hunting and fishing license sales, the agency purchases wildlife / waterfowl management areas that also give residents areas to hunt and fish. DWR said trespassers encroach on the 193 WMAs throughout Utah, that total over 500,000 acres or 780 square miles. The areas are critical to deer, weak after a long winer, and to ducks, geese and other birds that feed and migrate in the area. Some stay to nest and raise young.

(Utah Division of Wildlife Resources)

“Most of the wildlife management areas in northern Utah are closed annually from Jan. 1 until the second Saturday in April,” DWR said in a statement. “Waterfowl management areas in northern Utah are closed until Aug. 1. Several wildlife management areas in central Utah are closed to vehicle traffic (including ATVs) from Dec. 1 to April 30. Signs are posted at the WMA entrances with details of their closures.”

The state agency purchases and maintains areas of land to help wildlife and to preserve critical habitat, minimize wildlife depredation on  private property and preserve hunting and fishing areas. They were first established in the 1940s. Some are a couple of dozen acres and range in size up to 10,000 acres. The DWR provides a map that serves as a guideline as conditions on the group constantly change.

It stressed that encroaching on lands used by deer after a winter with little food, along with a change in the animals’ diet can stress them further. The release stated from January to mid-April is the most critical time of the year for deer in Utah. DWR Lt. David Beveridge said:

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. If you spook an animal and cause it to run, the animal has to use up fat reserves and energy that it needs to make it through the winter.

For a list of the areas visit https://wildlife.utah.gov/wmas.html where answers to frequently asked questions are also available.

“WMAs are not multi-use lands, and the types of recreation allowed are limited. For details about whether you may enter a Utah WMA or what you are allowed to do there, check the Wildlife Recreation Access Maps,” DWR stated. “For WMAs that allow public access, use of these lands, including for camping (where it is allowed) is free of charge.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

(Credit: Charlene Huber)...
Michael Houck

Family displaced after garage fire in Millcreek

A Millcreek family is displaced from their home after a fire started near their garage Sunday afternoon.
19 hours ago
The suspect motor home that abducted a woman. (Credit: South Salt Lake Police)...
Michael Houck

Police cancel search for possible abduction suspect

South Salt Lake Police are searching for a motorhome that possibly abducted a woman Saturday evening.
19 hours ago
Michael Houck

Bush fire spreads to carport and sheds, no injuries

A brush fire destroyed a carport and two sheds Saturday evening, no one was hurt, and no homes were threatened.
19 hours ago
The semi that's blocking traffic on I-80. (Credit: UDOT)...
Michael Houck

Semi tips, blocks traffic on I-80 in Summit County

A semitrailer tipped over on Interstate 80, reducing eastbound traffic to one lane.
19 hours ago
Navajo Nations Veterans Administration Director James Zwierlein, Navajo Nation President Jonathan N...
NOEL LYN SMITH Farmington Daily Times

Navajo Nation authorized to file benefit claims for veterans

The Navajo Nation Veterans Administration was formally recognized by the head of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for being the first tribal nation program to receive accreditation to help veterans submit federal benefits claims directly to the VA.
19 hours ago
Police responded to a shooting at 1485 South Major Street Sunday morning. (KSL TV)...
Cary J. Schwanitz and Michael Locklear

Salt Lake Police investigate shooting at 1485 South Major Street Sunday morning.

A 20-year-old man is in critical condition after he was shot early Sunday near 1485 S. Major Street in Salt Lake City.
19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
DWR reminds citizens that trespassing on protected lands harms Utah’s animals