Colorado Parks and Wildlife is asking the public for help in identifying who is responsible for dumping a headless mule deer carcass along the Colorado River a few miles west of Granby. The carcass was discovered on March 20.
Because of evidence found at the site, officers believe that the buck may have been harvested legally during last year's hunting season but was not skinned and prepared for human consumption as required by law, leaving the meat to waste.
The condition of the carcass suggests it was dumped only days before it was discovered.
"This was a waste of Colorado's wildlife resource, and we take it seriously," said District Wildlife Manager Scott Murdoch of Granby. "It appears that the person who did this hung the animal after it was killed months ago, but never got around to actually preparing it for consumption."
Wasting game meat is a serious offense and can lead to fines, felony charges and suspension of hunting privileges in Colorado and other Wildlife Violator Compact states.
Officers believe the suspect may be planning to have the head and antlers mounted, and ask anyone with information to contact authorities immediately.
"We rely on the public's help to identify people involved in any illegal activity, and we value their cooperation," said Murdoch. "We would like to talk to the person who did this and find out what happened."
To provide anonymous information, the public is urged to call Operation Game Thief 877-265-6648. Rewards may be offered to anyone with information that leads to a conviction.