of a Wyoming Game Warden
- a 24-hour-a-day job
- a full-time responsibility
- "The greatest job in the world," says North Pinedale Game Warden Bubba Haley.
Though wardens in many states spend the bulk of their time on law enforcement, Wyoming's wardens have highly diverse responsibilities, as you'll note below.
Part of the job's attraction is never quite knowing what the day will hold-whether trapping bears, darting and transplanting moose, flying in a helipcopter to count bighorn sheep, getting a deer out of a resident's backyard, hazing 1,000 elk out of a rancher's field, talking to hunters, or catching poachers. They are wildlife biologists, wildlife law enforcement officers, wildlife educators, problem solvers, and ambassadors to landowners, hunters, anglers and communities throughout Wyoming. Wardens are considered the local "expert" when constituents want to find out what's going on with their wildlife and their department. Additional information is available on the Wyoming Game Wardens Association's website
Wildlife Management/Data Collection & Analysis
Collect/summarize wildlife data, from both ground and air, to determine distribution, abundance, recruitment, hunter harvest and mortality causes of wildlife. Work with wildlife biologists and neighboring game wardens on hunting season strategies and recommendations. Sample wildlife for research and disease surveillance.
Enforcement of Game and Fish Laws and Regulations
Enforce/check compliance with hunting, fishing, trapping and watercraft statutes and regulations as well as littering and state land camping, open fires and closed/off road travel restrictions. Write enforcement reports, attend court, work with other enforcement agencies, conduct investigations, and collect intelligence. Carry and maintain law enforcement weapons and gear.
Injured and Nuisance Wildlife
Respond to and appropriately handle injured and nuisance wildlife calls which may require euthanization of wildlife. Utilize immobilization or lethal techniques based upon evaluation of circumstances.
Conduct watercraft safety and registration inspections along with HIN, VIN and AIS inspections. Enforce/check compliance with watercraft statutes and regulations. Educate public regarding watercraft safety.
Evaluate damage to crops and livestock by wildlife, including investigations, data collection and delivering damage materials to mitigate conflict.
Public and Agency Contacts and Communication
Act as the local liaison between the WGFD and the public. On a daily basis, develop and maintain effective working relationships and communication/coordination with WGFD employees. Make regular public contacts, both in the field and office setting, with landowners, sportsmen, boaters, public-at-large, conservation groups, government agencies and non-government organizations. Provide information and education on various wildlife topics and boating safety as well as the wide variety of other WGFD issues. Develop and present structured educational and information programs related to watercraft safety and hunter education.
Participate in law enforcement (including firearms and intermediate weapons), wildlife management, wildlife conflict resolution/damage, injured wildlife, immobilization of wildlife, equipment (motorized and non-motorized), working with the public and other training as assigned or deemed necessary. Required to attend and successfully complete/pass the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy Peace Officer basic and annual training.
Wildlife Investigative Unit