A Wisconson woman was fined over $6,000 for shooting two elk that she mistook for deer.
According to The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Salina Ann Beltran was issued a $6,152.50 citation in Rusk County for hunting elk during a closed season, a non-traffic ordinance violation, according to online court records.
She was hunting alone in a tree stand when she saw what she believed to be a buck walking straight towards her. All she saw were forked antlered and its head was down. When the animal turned broadside she took the shot. The animal did not react so she fired twice more and it disappeared over the hill.
Moments later she saw an animal in the same area she had shot. “All I saw was the body and it looked like the same animal,” Beltran said in the report. so she shot again.
After 45 minutes she got down from her stand to track. She came upon the first animal, a fork-horn bull, and realized it was not a deer. She also then noticed the second elk, a spike, laying about 40 yards away.
She called her fiance for assistance and then proceded to the DNR service center in Ladysmith and filed an initial report and was cited by DNR officials.
Beltran was a hunter safety graduate who had only been hunting for two years. According to reports she once harvested a small buck prior to this incident.
DNR chief conservation warden Todd Schaller said the incidents highlight two main points about hunting and safety.
“The first is to be sure of your target and what’s beyond,” Schaller said. “The other is, if you make a mistake, be honest and contact the department.”
She is scheduled to appear in court on 14 January where she faces the potential fine of $6,152.