Press release from Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.

Everyone in Sumner and Harper Counties knows what huge economic impact hunting is for the local communities, especially deer hunting.  Some non-resident deer hunters pay in excess of $3,000 to hunt deer in Kansas for a few days. New fines set in Kansas law could bankrupt some deer poachers this season.  Every year in November Game Wardens receive countless phone calls about illegally killed deer. Now Wardens have some ammunition to fire back at poachers. 

According to State law 32-1032, those caught spotlighting, hunting without permits, hunting with illegal landowner/tenant permits, shooting at deer from a motor vehicle (road hunting), hunting during closed season or trespassing while hunting deer could face fines in excess of $15,000. Here is a summary of the new State law;

K.S.A. 32-1032: In addition to any other penalty prescribed by law, the unlawful intentional taking of a trophy big game animal shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $5,000.  A trophy big game animal shall include an antlered whitetail deer having an inside spread measurement of at least 16 inches.  In addition to any other penalty prescribed by law, the defendant shall pay the restitution value of any deer to the state treasury.  The formula for calculating the restitution amount for deer is: (gross score – 100) squared X $2.

For example, a poacher shoots an antlered deer using a spotlight at night and its gross score is 180 inches and has an inside spread measurement of 17 inches.  In addition to fines for spotlighting and shooting after legal hours, the court shall fine them the mandatory minimum of $5,000.  Then they must pay the restitution amount of; (180-100) squared X $2, which equals $12,800. Total comes to approximately $18,000 for one deer.

The State of Kansas has recognized the economic impact of Kansas’ wildlife. To ensure those resources are here for future generations, they have passed these laws to prevent the illegal poachers from destroying the opportunity for legal hunters to harvest a trophy deer.

If hunters have any questions on laws or regulations please refer to the Kansas Hunting & Furharvesting Regulations Summary available at license vendors or visit our website at

To report violators call your local 911 dispatch to reach a Game Warden in your area or call the phone number listed for your county in the KS Hunting Regulation Summary.