Terra Bella Man Arrested for Impersonating a Game Warden

Media Contacts:
Nathaniel Arnold, DFG Law Enforcement, (559) 284-1264
Patrick Foy, DFG Law Enforcement, (916) 508-7095
A 28-year-old man has been arrested for impersonating a California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) warden in Tulare County. Joshua Adam O’Daniel, a Terra Bella resident, was sought by law enforcement for allegedly claiming to be a game warden making a field contact with a mother and daughter.
On Dec. 30, 2010, the mother and daughter were parked along Blueridge Road in rural Tulare County when O’Daniel stopped his pickup nearby and approached them. The women said that he had dogs on the ground and appeared to be hunting. He first asked them if they had seen any bears, which they denied. He then identified himself as a game warden and asked if either of the women had been drinking or had any drugs or firearms in the vehicle. O’Daniel then told the women he needed to check their vehicle for drugs and firearms.
When O’Daniel realized there were additional occupants in the vehicle (which he had not previously noticed due to tinted windows), he asked the women if there were males in the vehicle. When the women responded that there were “lots of them,” O’Daniel immediately sped off in his pickup, leaving his dogs trailing after him.
A subsequent investigation based on witness information identified O’Daniel as a suspect. Both women independently picked O’Daniel out of a photo lineup. Because O’Daniel had searchable probation terms from a prior criminal conviction on weapons charges, wardens contacted him at his residence and arrested him on March 17. He is now facing additional charges for possession of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, a firearm and ammunition, as well as unlawful storage of a firearm.
Impersonating a peace officer is a misdemeanor crime punishable by up to one year in jail and up to a $2,000 fine.

Special Wyoming Hunt Tag to be Sold as Fundraiser for Children of DFG Biologists

Media Contacts:
Stan Atwood, California Mule Deer Foundation, (408) 395-5503
Dwight Ortmann, California Mule Deer Foundation, (650) 556-5882
Kirsten Macintyre, DFG Communications, (916) 322-8988

A special big game hunting opportunity in Wyoming will be auctioned at a March 26 fundraiser sponsored by the Mule Deer Foundation Central Coast Chapter. The Wyoming Commissioner’s tag will allow the winning bidder to choose an elk, deer or antelope hunt during any open 2011 season in Wyoming.  The tag is valid anyplace in Wyoming, except the closed sections 75, 77 and 79.

The tag was donated by a Wyoming Game and Fish Commissioner to the California Waterfowl Association, which decided to auction it to raise funds to benefit the children of the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) biologists killed in a January 2010 helicopter crash.

The auction will be held at the Mule Deer Foundation’s annual fundraising night, to be held from 3 to 10 p.m. March 26 at the San Jose Airport Garden Hotel. Tickets to the dinner may be purchased online at the website, www.muledeer-ccc.org.

Attendance at the dinner is not necessary to bid on the Wyoming tag or other auction prizes. Telephone bids will be accepted, but bidders must register in advance by filling out the forms available on the website. Forms must be completed and faxed to the Mule Deer Foundation by March 24. For more information, see the website or call Stan Atwood at (408) 395-5503.

The Six Children’s Fund was established to benefit the young children of Clu Cotter and Kevin O’Connor, two biologists who were among four killed in a helicopter crash while conducting a routine deer study in Madera County. All proceeds from this auction are earmarked for this fund. Other supporters of the auction include DFG, the California Fish and Game Commission, the California Waterfowl Association, Safari Club International’s San Francisco Bay Area and Golden Gate chapters, and the California Wild Sheep Foundation.

The Central Coast Chapter of the Mule Deer Foundation is a 501(c)(3)nonprofit organization. Donations in excess of the fair market value of products and services received are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.


DFG to Offer One-day Wild Pig Hunting Clinic in April

pig on rangeContact:
Lt. Dan Lehman, Advanced Hunter Education Program Coordinator, (916) 358-4356
Kyle Orr, DFG Communications, (916) 322-8958


The California Department of Fish and Game’s (DFG) Advanced Hunter Education Program will offer a pig hunting clinic in King City on April 9.

The clinic, which is co-sponsored by the Pacific Coast Hunter Education Association, will be held at the Salinas Valley Fairgrounds from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The cost is $45 and space is limited. Youths 16 years and younger are free but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

The clinic will cover will pig biology, hunting techniques and requirements, methods for locating wild pigs, locations to hunt and actual field dressing and care of game. 

DFG’s Advanced Hunter Education Program will provide all necessary class equipment. Meals are not included but a barbecue lunch can be purchased from the Pacific Coast Hunter Education Association for $10 on the day of the clinic.

Registration forms are available online at www.dfg.ca.gov/huntered/advanced/index.aspx. After registering, participants will receive an e-mail with a map to the facility and a list of items to bring. 


DFG to Offer Black Powder Hunting Clinic in April

Lt. Dan Lehman, Advanced Hunter Education Program Coordinator, (916) 358-4356
Kyle Orr, DFG Communications, (916) 322-8958

The California Department of Fish and Game’s (DFG) Advanced Hunter Education Program will offer a black powder hunting clinic in Merced County on April 30. 

Designed for all skill levels, the clinic will include both lecture and live-fire exercises. The lecture portion will include a short history of black powder shooting, different styles of black powder rifles used today, how to safely load and shoot a black powder rifle, laws and regulations pertaining to black powder hunting and strategies for hunting with black powder firearms.

The live-fire exercise will include target shooting with black powder firearms. All course material and loaner black powder firearms will be provided. Participants should not bring their personal firearms.

The clinic will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the River Oaks Range in Winton, seven miles north of Atwater. Space is limited to 25 people and the cost is $45. Youths 16 years and younger are free but must be accompanied by a registered parent or guardian.

Registration forms are available online at www.dfg.ca.gov/huntered/advanced/blackpowder.aspx.

After registering, participants will receive an e-mail with a map to the facility and a list of items to bring.

DFG Extends Public Comment Period Regarding Mountain Yellow-Legged Frogs

Andrew Hughan, DFG Communications, (916) 344-8944
Mitch Lockhart, DFG Fisheries Branch (530) 906-3934

The public comment period regarding the proposed listing of mountain yellow-legged frogs is extended until April 1, 2011. The Department of Fish and Game (DFG) public comment website malfunctioned and comments could not be submitted electronically. Because of this, the public comment period is extended by two weeks.

All comments or other information must be submitted in writing by 5 p.m. on Friday, April 1, 2011.  Comments can be e-mailed to MYLF@dfg.ca.gov or mailed to:

Fisheries Branch – High Mountain Lakes Program
Department of Fish and Game
Attn: Mitch Lockhart
830 S St.
Sacramento, CA 95811

Comments received by the due date will be included in the status evaluation report being prepared for the Commission. The report, which is due to be completed at or before the September 2011 Commission meeting, will address existing threats to mountain yellow-legged frogs and the effectiveness of the current regulations regarding the species. The public will also have a 30-day comment period after issuance of the report.

DFG is now accepting public comment on a proposal to add two species of frogs to California’s endangered species list. The proposal, initiated by the Center for Biological Diversity, addresses the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana sierrae) and the southern mountain yellow-legged frog (Rana muscosa), collectively known as mountain yellow-legged frogs.

The public is invited to submit relevant scientific data or comments about mountain yellow-legged frogs’ taxonomic status, ecology, biology, life history, management recommendations, distribution, abundance, threats and essential habitat, or other factors related to the status of the species.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife News