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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I was out doing some scouting in my deer unit and also my elk unit over the weekend. It was a great time. I saw tons of deer, many of them looking very healthy. Saw probably 25 turkeys. A number of hens with 5-6 poults each and some toms. Saw elk with calves. Overall, it was a great 3.5 days.

However, while tramping around in my deer unit, I came across an area that I have been before that is often used as a campsite for others. It sits on the edge of a small ridge, but the view is great for glassing the surrounding hills. I got there and what I found looked like a bone yard. There were the remains of probably 5-6 deer. I found 4 skulls for sure. 2 of the deer were recent enough kills that the hair was still there and they were still in the rotting stage.

It made me immediately think about where a mountain lion might drag their kills to lay and eat while keeping an eye out. But, this spot is right next to a road and is a very well used camping area. Would a mountain lion dare bring its kills here repeatedly? My next thought was that someone was killing deer and taking the meat. But, the deer that were still rotting had all quarters attached and did not look like they had been 'harvested'.

Unfortunately, what I ended up walking away thinking was that it was poachers just shooting them for fun. Why they would drag them to the campsite, I don't know. The site had been used very recently - there were bright and shiny beer cans cast about. Most likely while the deer were still pretty fresh. All of the remains in the pics below were within about 20 square yds of each other. I didn't venture much further to take more pics, as I had a storm bearing down on me.

What are your thoughts? Is it worth reporting? Am I missing something?
Wood Plant Natural landscape Grass Bedrock
Plant community Plant Automotive tire Organism Vegetation
Wood Trunk Terrestrial animal Soil Landscape
Plant Organism Grass Groundcover Soil
Plant community Plant Wood Grass Trunk
Wood Plant Twig Trunk Terrestrial plant
Plant Wood Trunk Groundcover Grass
Brown Ecoregion Plant Natural landscape Bedrock
 

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I agree with Moosemeat's assumption. I have ran across a similar situation between Fountain Green and Nephi. I contacted the DWR and was informed that the area was where roadkill carcass's were being dumped. How close is the area to a paved road?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I agree with Moosemeat's assumption. I have ran across a similar situation between Fountain Green and Nephi. I contacted the DWR and was informed that the area was where roadkill carcass's were being dumped. How close is the area to a paved road?
Great thought. I had not considered that. I went ahead and put in a report. It's about 2.5 miles from the nearest paved road.
 

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There was a small ravine spot near Micron in Ut County growing up, that was the epitome of a bone yard. I think everyone from the early 1900s dumped animals there. Cattle, sheep, deer... dogs, you name it, it was there. I added 20-30 animals myself over the years. It was crazy. I wish I had a picture of it. That area is all million $ homes now.

-DallanC
 

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I always find bone piles from cougars and yotes. I know a spot that I can go to every year right after winter and find a complete elk skeleton scattered around all with crunch marks from a cougar. If that’s a perfect spot for us to hunt then the cougars knew about that 1000s of years ago. Check for teeth marks on the bones. Doesn’t look like a cougar from the pics because the rib cages don’t show an entry spot at the vitals so my guess so far is hoping it’s not an evil wanton poacher.
 

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Is it in a wintering area for deer? Every year carcasses naturally pile up in wintering areas from malnutrition or disease. Lions will also drag deer kills short distances to a preferred spot for consumption, particularly under ledges by females with places for their kittens to easily hide. I don't see anything alarming in your pics, looks like mother nature to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Is it in a wintering area for deer? Every year carcasses naturally pile up in wintering areas from malnutrition or disease. Lions will also drag deer kills short distances to a preferred spot for consumption, particularly under ledges by females with places for their kittens to easily hide. I don't see anything alarming in your pics, looks like mother nature to me.
I believe most of the deer in this particular area are typically hanging out there for most of the year. DWR officer said he believes that it is likely a dumping spot for roadkill, but he will be going out to take a look at it and will let me know what he finds.
 
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