Yellowstone offers reward in bison killings

Yellowstone National Park is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for illegally killing three bison last week in northern Yellowstone.

The bison were likely shot between the evening of March 13 and the morning of March 15 alongside the road in the Blacktail Plateau, to the east of Mammoth Hot Springs at least 10 miles south of the park’s northern boundary, according to an investigation by park rangers.

Publicizing the potential reward and asking for the public’s help to identify whoever is responsible, park officials urged anyone with information to call the Yellowstone National Park Tip Line, 307-344-2132.

Pending further investigation, park rangers were not disclosing whether the bison were butchered for trophies or the type of firearm used.

The killing or removal of any animal from inside Yellowstone is strictly prohibited by the Lacey Act and the Code of Federal Regulations. This includes animals shot legally outside the park that cross into and die within the park boundary. Taking and removing any animal parts, including shed antlers, is also prohibited, park officials said.

A park spokesman says violators are investigated and aggressively prosecuted, and are subject to penalties including fines, restitution, and the forfeiture of vehicles, equipment and personal property associated with the violations.

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