Did you call any of them in to the DNR? They could be ignorant (especially the kids), but most likely just figured they wouldn't get caught. And if you didn't call them in, things worked out for them just like they planned.
I know persoally these stories can go on and on. I was goose hunting grand river. Bag was 1 a day and ducks were closed. 2 guys next to us were shooting at everything that flew. They drop 1 goose... ducks come over and they drop 2. We yell ducks are closed and get the finger. Another flock of geese and they drop 2. Another flock we drop our 2 and leave. Get back to big hill launch and only 1 other vehicle. JonRae from IL. 1st payphone call them in before cell days. Head over to Horicon DNR staton talk to chip on his shoulder Jon and Judy is on it... We go pheasant hunting, get home and Judy Nigbar calls. I located them, will you testify. I will, but please work them to confess, so I don't need to miss work... Turnd out she busted the entire group of 10 for over bagging and shooting ducks out of season. State and Federal charges. My friend and I didn't have to testify, but felt good we did right. My right to hunt and fish is not worth any violation. As a sportsman it is our duty to know and not stray from the laws to protect the resources. The older I get its not about what I bring home, but the experience and who your with.
I was Ice fishing a Manitowoc county lake a few years back with my brother and 7 of his friends. After an hour or so of fishing 2 of my brothers buddies went to go to to McDonalds to go get some food. The rest of us stayed. Trouble is they left there 6 tip ups. 20 minutes later I see this grey pickup with multiple antennas stop at the launch. 10 minutes later he comes out and says I see 6 extra tip ups than men here. We told the warden exactly what happened and said the other 2 guys will be back shortly. He asked us to each pull our tip ups out and tell him what tip ups where ours personally.
Hour later they still weren't back. The warden was then thinking we were pulling his leg. He looked at me and said that he was going to give me the ticket as I was the oldest of the group. I told him I would surely accept the ticket if I created the violation but I did not. As here are my 3 tip ups. Finally the warden started to really get perturbed and said he was going to wait an extra 20 minutes but that a violation occurred and someone has to get a ticket.
Finally, about another half hour later the other 2 guys came back on the lake with a bag of Mcdonalds in each hand and a smile on their face. Those smiles got turned around pretty quickly when that warden turned around and those 2 guys saw that badge. Both got fines and tip ups confiscated.
I once found a corn pile( actually a corn mountain, like you backed the truck up and dumped it kind of pile) on public land near me. Upon investigation, I found a tree limb blind , a pile of empty 223 brass ( this was about 10 years ago, before statewide rifle), and scattered all over the woods were deer carcasses. Most had heads and backstroke cut off , the rest left to rot.
Anyway, I called the dnr. A lady answered , i didn' have the wardens number, and I told her what I had found. She said and I quote " oh. We will need to get someone out there" and then said good bye. To bad I never got the chance to tell her where they were or a phone number to reach me.
I will never bother to call again. Not saying I'm right or anything, but I did the right thing and they did nothing.
I got called on once as well while duck hunting. They apparently got the wrong group mixed up with whoever actually got called on. When they exhausted their search of us, our guns, the boat, my truck, etc., the one younger warden got bucky. I had some fun with him and said, "Awe, there, there. You'll get your pinch some day". That really pissed him off but I ended the incident with no citations.
I called in about a dead buck with a bullet hole in it next to a road. Nothing came from it, people never came back for the antlers. That was my only call in that I made.
I had the tip line called on me one time though. Apparently someone thought I had too many tip-ups in. I didn't have a vexilar so I was drilling holes and checking the depth with a tip-up, they thought I put one in every hole I drilled. Warden was actually kind of a dick about the whole thing and seemed pissed when he realized I only had 3. Maybe he felt like he just wasted his time, probably had to drive a ways to check me. He did not hide it well haha! I sometimes wonder how many wild goose chases they get sent on.
You may only have a 5% chance of getting the results you want if you call it in, but its a 0% chance if you don't at least try. We had people road hunting by us deer season one year and called it in. The warden didn't get them right away, but decided to stick around, and sure enough the idiots did it again and got busted later in the day.
RD, I believe I recall a similar thread of yours...
If you don’t report violations, it is a guaranty that nothing will change.
Folks tend to change their behavior after they’ve been tagged with a violation or two. If you see something wrong - say something. If you do nothing, you will change nothing!
Many times they get there even if its a bit late. And people are prone to repeat themselves. I called on a kid while icefishing wind lake. Warden got there an hour later. He went back the next day, sat with my buddy for afew minutes in the same spot we fished the day before, and nabbed the kid for unattended lines and liscense stuff. If you call it is only a matter of time before they get dinged. I even got a call saying thank you after the citation was issued...
If you dont at least give an effort you are part of the issue.
I've called in Racine more than once for salmon snaggers and people keeping over the limit. Sometimes the warden has shown up quickly other times I'd left after an hour or two and hadn't seen them.
Bottom line is if you don't report, they won't show at all. There is zero reason to not report if they are blatant violators. The worst case is that you call it in and nothing happens. It only takes a few minutes to call. I don't see the logic of posting complaints on an internet forum and then say you did nothing about the situation. It's not hating to comment on that.
I'll agree with the OP, it does take a long time for wardens to get there. They are definitely spread thin. I called the police on some people snagging fish below upper Oconomowoc lake where the muskies and walleyes come up and spawn, big sign saying fish refuge. Someone yelled down to them they were fishing illegally and they got in their car and took off. So can the police do anything to blatant violators? I know they have lake patrols for boating infractions.