As a result of a Fish and Game sting operation, two men from Oakdale have been sentenced for attempting to use dogs to hunt bears out of season.
On July 26, Gerald Hill and Daniel Johnson were cited in the Sweetwater Mountains north of Bridgeport, after Fish and Game staff had used a lawfully killed bear carcass to catch hunters out of season.
Deputy District Attorney for Mono County Kyle Graham reports that a Fish and Game warden had used the paws of the bear to lay out tracks and wait for the hunters, who were using dogs mounted with radio telemetry equipment.
Dogs are legal to use to hunt bears, but only after the season opens, which in most regions of the state starts with the general deer opener in October. The season does open the third Saturday of August for bow hunters. With the citation on July 26th, Graham reports that the two men pleaded no contest to attempted use of dogs to hunt or pursue bears out of season.
Along with fines and two years probation, the two men must surrender their receivers and dog mounted telemetry equipment, at a value of $3,000, according to Graham. The two also cannot hunt bears for one year.