Decoy nabs hunters

Two hunters have been fined a total of $4,000 for illegal hunting after firing at a moose decoy.
Luigi Mesto, 72, of Red Lake, was fined $1,500 for careless use of a firearm while hunting and $500 for discharging a firearm from a travelled portion of a roadway.
He also has been banned from hunting for a year, and must successfully complete an Ontario Hunter Safety course before applying for a new hunting licence.
Conrad Mann, 42, of Cochenour, was fined $2,000 after pleading guilty to hunting bull moose without a licence.
He also has been banned from hunting for a year.
Court heard that on Oct. 7, Ministry of Natural Resources conservation officers from Red Lake District set up a bull moose decoy off Highway 105 near Red Lake.
Both of the hunters fired at the decoy in two separate incidents.
In one case, officers saw Mesto leave a vehicle and fire twice from the travelled portion of the roadway and over the head of his hunting partner.
In the other case, officers observed Mann exit his vehicle and shoot twice at the decoy.
Officers spoke with Mann and discovered he only had a calf tag and was not engaged in legal party hunting at the time the shots were fired.
Justice of the Peace Joe Morrison heard the cases Dec. 1 in Red Lake.
The ministry reminds the public that regulations which prohibit hunters from discharging a firearm on or across a roadway are in place to protect hunters as well as the public.
As well, hunting regulations are in place to protect the sustainability of moose populations and to give all hunters a fair opportunity to take part in the hunt.
The rules for “party hunting for moose” can be found on page 31 of the 2006 Hunting Regulations Summary.
To report a natural resources violation, call toll-free 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667) any time or contact your local MNR office during regular business hours.
You also can call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).