New website will allow Albertans to report poachers online

By Lethbridge News Now
November 6, 2017 - 6:18am

ALBERTA - Until now, the only way to report poaching activity, dangerous wildlife or public land abuse was to phone the Report A Poacher hotline.

As of Friday, people can visit the Report A Poacher website to fill out a form and submit it online. The information will be sent to fish and wildlife officers for followup and investigation.

Minister of Justice and Solicitor General Kathleen Ganley says the Report A Poacher program helps ensure Alberta's wide variety of wildlife species and diverse landscapes are protected for future generations.

"Our hope is that by making it easier to report suspicious hunting or fishing activity, it will encourage more Albertans to act responsibly when enjoying the outdoors."

Sgt. Major Adrian Marr of the Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Branch added the more public support they receive through the program the better.

"With more support we can be more effective in combatting fish and wildlife crime and other violations. Officers cannot be everywhere at once, and we must rely on the public for their tips so that poaches can be brought to justice." Marr said.

Emergencies and incidents needing immediate attention should still be reported through the 24-hour Report A Poacher line at 1-800-642-3800.

Government officials say phoning is still the fastest way to reach an officer, while the new website can be used to report issues that are less urgent.

People reporting through either the phone or the web can remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward ranging from $100 to $1,000.

If someone is comfortable providing their contact information, it can help make an investigation more successful as the investigating officer may have followup questions.

Any personal information Albertans choose to provide is kept confidential.

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