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Don’t Mess with Texas Game Wardens

Game wardens are reality TV stars these days, from New Hampshire to Alaska. The show Lone Star Law follows Texas game wardens on cable TV. But Texas Parks & Wildlife has been chronicling these adventures online for years. 


Sometimes, field notes read like something out of a Louis L’Amour book. Other times, it’s like Dragnet in the Pecos. Want to get an idea of a game warden’s day (and night) in Texas?  The agency’s Game Warden Field Notes provide an inside look at what it’s like to be a warden, and will make readers appreciate the importance of wardens’ work to protect our game and laws.  


It boils down to this: Obey game laws and … DON’T MESS WITH A TEXAS (OR ANY) GAME WARDEN.


Game Warden Field Notes are posted every two weeks at TPWD.Texas.gov. 


Here’s are some samples:

Snake in the Grass

A Fort Bend County game warden received a tip that an 8-10 foot king cobra had escaped from a local Controlled Exotic Snake Species Permit holder. Since the permit holder resides near several schools, wardens and local law enforcement immediately responded to the scene, notified the schools of the situation and began searching for the missing snake. The permit holder also contacted other individuals who had experience dealing with venomous exotic snakes and a search party began combing the tall grass in the vicinity. In addition, a neighbor who owned the pasture brought out a tractor and began shredding the knee-high grasses and weeds, creating a perimeter that was easier to search around the facility property. After several hours, the cobra was located and captured by the permit holder and his “herp” friends. Additional safety measures are being installed by the permit holder to ensure escapes do not occur in the future.

Out (of it) for a Swim

A Tarrant County game warden received a call from the sheriff’s department reporting an overturned kayak in the middle of Benbrook Lake and the displaced paddler in distress. It was determined the individual was delusional and told the Benbrook Fire Department he didn’t need any help. Responders tossed the man a life jacket and convinced him to put it on, but as the warden attempted to grab the individual and place him in the patrol boat for his safety, the subject took the life jacket off and swam away from the boat. After refusing another life jacket, the individual swam to the shore. The warden and the firemen attempted to restrain the individual but he ran back into the lake and swam back out. The warden boarded his boat and used it to push the subject back to the shore where numerous Benbrook police officers and Tarrant County sheriff’s deputies restrained him. He was transported to a local hospital for evaluation.

Stranded, Twice

A Matagorda County game warden received a request for assistance from the U.S. Coast Guard involving a boat that had run aground in West Matagorda Bay. According to statements made by two of the occupants of the vessel, they, along with a third individual, had been riding near the Port O’Connor Jetties the evening before and had run aground on Bird Island. The couple told officers that they had decided to just build a fire and spend the night on the island. The next morning the third individual was missing and they could not locate him on the island, which is about the size of a football field and covered in brush. Coast Guard boats and a helicopter began searching the waters around the island while the warden conducted a foot search of the island. The Coast Guard helo spotted the individual clinging to a well head in the bay approximately two miles from the island. Once rescued, the individual made the statement that he did not know how he got into the water. Investigation continues.

Jul 25, 2018 -

Good stuff. Visit TPWD.Texas.gov to read more Texas Game Warden Field Notes.

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