Q. How do I report a poacher or other fish and wildlife violation?
A. Get as much information as possible on the suspect(s) and their vehicle(s) or vessel(s) and call, or email, it in to the Enforcement Program. The phone number is 1-877-933-9847 and the web address is http://wdfw.wa.gov/poaching/ The license plate(s) or vessel registration number/s are especially important! For example, a poacher may be from Seattle but is poaching salmon from the Cowlitz River. During the week, you can call us and we will pass the information on to an officer. You can call the Washington State Patrol in the evenings and weekends and they will get in contact with our officers.

Q. Will the poacher learn my identity?
A. No. The officer and his or her Sergeant are the only ones who get that information. As a case progresses, your identity may be provided to the defense attorneys but that is subject to court proceedings.

Q. How do I get rid of a problem Opossum/Raccoon/other wild animal?
A. Depending on the situation, a Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) number can be provided, you can trap and euthanize animal yourself, or you can use some method of driving the animal away. Methods for driving off wildlife include: mothballs, ammonia-soaked rags, loud noises, objects that move in the breeze, shooting them with birdshot or slingshots with marbles. Check out WDFW's Living with Wildlife Series for more ideas on dealing with these and other problem wildlife.

Q. How do I get rid of a bear?
A. Secure all of your garbage and garbage cans, bird feeders, grills, or other attractants so the bear cannot get to them. Loud noises such as sudden bursts from foghorns, gunshots, or yelling helps. Place a Jalapeño or Habañero pepper in a Twinkie and throw it out for the bear. It makes the bear sick and they associate being sick with coming to your location. Check out WDFW's Living with Wildlife Series for more ideas on dealing with bears and other problem wildlife.

Q. What is the current status of fishing on a particular river or in a particular area?
A. You can check the “Fishing in Washington” pamphlet, or the agency Web site, for the current regulations as well as calling either of the hotlines for fish and shellfish rule changes.

Q. Can a felon have a muzzleloader for hunting?
A. If the felon has had his/her rights restored through the court of sentencing, yes the felon may use a muzzleloader to hunt. If the felon has NOT had his/her rights restored through the court, then the felon may NOT possess a pistol, shotgun, muzzleloader, or other firearm. The felon can hunt with archery gear but not firearms.

Q. Can I have a daily limit, or possession, for Oregon and Washington with the reciprocity agreement?
A. No. You can have one or the other, but not both.

Q. How do I have a dead bird checked for bird flu? Or an animal tested for rabies?
A. You secure the carcass of the bird in a plastic bag and take it to your local Department of Health. To be tested for rabies, the animal must be captured and killed. The carcass is taken to the Department of Health and a brain tissue sample is collected and tested for rabies.

Q. Where can I hunt in Washington?
A. Prior to opening day, get a copy of the “Big Game Hunting Seasons and Rules” and a map of Washington. Check the pamphlet for areas and dates, and then plot the area you want to hunt on the map. Now head to the area, or call, and make contact with the landowners for permission to hunt their property. You can contact the Regional Offices for information on the locations of various deer or elk herds that may be too big to be supported by the area vegetation. Contacting an area officer is another method for finding good hunting areas.

Q. Who do I talk to find out about tribal hunting and fishing regulations?
A. While the Department of Fish and Wildlife gets most tribal regulations, you can call the local tribes and ask for the respective person for that information. You can find the tribal phone numbers online or in your local phone book.