Denver Colorado Wildlife Lawyers Blog

Shutting Down Hunting and Fishing is an Overreach of State Authority

By Wildlife Lawyer on June 5, 2020

The United States has long valued hunting and fishing as outdoor sports central to our identity and culture. The practices are steeped in tradition and have been a method for families and sporting enthusiasts to enjoy our country’s natural wonders, put food on the table, and manage wildlife. About half of American gun owners identity hunting as the primary reason for owning a firearm. As governments implement restrictions to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, whether states can legally shut down hunting and fishing has become a relevant question.

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Posted in: Fishing, Hunting

Fish For Free in Colorado This Weekend

By Wildlife Lawyer on June 5, 2020

Once again, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife is inviting resident and nonresident anglers of all ages to participate in its annual Free Fishing Weekend on June 6 and 7. Don’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity to fish the amazing rivers, streams, creeks, and lakes that Colorado has to offer. Bring a friend, bring your child or someone that’s never experienced the joy of fishing, this is the perfect time to try out the sport of fishing and also spend some quality time outdoors.

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Posted in: Fishing

I’m Not Saying I Agree With It, But Bird Law In This Country Is Not Governed By Reason

By Wildlife Lawyer on December 2, 2018

In a recent case in Colorado, we represented a client who was charged with illegally possessing over 600 game birds. This case posed a challenge as there was a large amount of evidence that the client was in possession of the birds and knew that there were problems with that possession. Cases such as this are investigated and charged by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Division of the Department of Wildlife. This state agency may not be the most well-known law enforcement agency, but they often have some of the most detailed investigations that we see.

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Posted in: Bird Law

Colorado Parks & Wildlife and Veterans Benefits

By Wildlife Lawyer on April 13, 2018

Colorado State Parks & Wildlife offers a number of benefits to both active duty and former members of the military who are disabled. Visit the Colorado Parks & Wildlife website for full details. The link is provided at the end of the blog. Colorado and Welsh Law, LLC are grateful for your service and hope you enjoy this beautiful area and all that is has to offer you and your family.

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Posted in: Firm News

Title 18 May Affect Your Privilege to Hunt and Fish

By Wildlife Lawyer on March 5, 2018

Did you know some criminal convictions under Colorado’s Criminal code codified in Title 18 may affect your privilege to hunt and fish? Don’t get caught in that trap!

Within Colorado’s Parks and Wildlife code codified in Title 33, there is a specific provision that provides for a person who has been convicted of any violation of title 18, C.R.S., that was committed while hunting, trapping, fishing, or engaging in a related activity that would total 20 or more points against the license, to trigger suspension proceedings with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission.

Don’t become a target. Contact Welsh Law, LLC attorney Jennifer Hayden to advise you of collateral consequences regarding your privilege to hunt and fish.

Tim Phillips and the St. Paul Giant

By Wildlife Lawyer on November 15, 2017

It looks like the incredible skill and persistence of Tim Phillips in Missouri led to the harvesting of a 39-point buck this week, which has recently been dubbed the “St. Paul giant.” We look forward to seeing what the final score turns out to be on this amazing animal.

Congratulations from everyone at!

We advise big game hunters across the globe on all of their legal hunting and outdoor questions and issues. Call for a free consultation today.

Reality-TV’s Billy Buspice Loses Hunting Privileges until 2019 for Poaching

By Wildlife Lawyer on June 29, 2017

Billy Buspice, co-host of the reality-TV show “Wildgame Nation” and star of A&E’s upcoming series “Country Buck$,” had his hunting and fishing privileges revoked this week until 2019 by a Louisiana Circuit Court judge as part of his sentencing for charges of allowing an antlerless elk to go to waste and hunting without a license. Buspice will also be placed on supervised probation for a year-and-a-half and pay $23,000 in fines and restitution.

On October 16 of last year, hunters witnessed an individual filming a man on Buspice’s property shooting a calf and a bull elk. According to the hunters, the men examined the two carcasses, which were approximately sixty yards apart, and then departed without them. A man later returned to retrieve the bull elk, the hunters said, but left the calf carcass in the field.

The shooter was Buspice, who eventually stated that he had accidentally hit the calf while aiming for the elk. He also admitted to later instructing two individuals to hide the abandoned carcass in a drainage ditch.

The charges are not Buspice’s first. He received a citation earlier in 2016 for purchasing a resident elk license as a non-resident, and he’s also been cited for purchasing deer licensees beyond the authorized number permitted. In addition, Busbice is being sued in civil court by a hunter who was arrested in 2013 for killing a deer on Busbice’s property without permission.

As a result of the charges, Buspice is now banned from hunting in at least forty-five states until 2019, including his home state of Louisiana. Furthermore, violating his probation terms by hunting without a license could result in an additional six months of jail time.

Many hunters remain unaware that a license suspension or revocation in one state can transfer to nearly all of them. In addition, it can be difficult to remain up-to-date on changes in local, state, and federal hunting and fishing regulations each year – which means that many of the 15.4 million license holders nationwide may be unintentionally violating any number of laws.

If you’re planning a hunting or fishing trip – or if you’ve received a citation or been charged with a violation – knowing what your rights are can be crucial in keeping your license and privileges. Our office can help you ensure that you’re enjoying the outdoors – and that you’re doing so in full compliance with the law.

Charles Feldmann, a lifelong outdoorsman, leads the firm’s wildlife practice group. Contact him at for a free consultation regarding your wildlife legal matter.

Importance of Seeking Legal Counsel After an Accusation of a Hunting Violation

By Wildlife Lawyer on June 19, 2017

Colorado is a state that takes wildlife seriously. The state has many laws regarding conduct outlined in its official statutes. Specifically, the legislation in the Wildlife and Parks and Outdoor Recreation laws, Article 6 describes the general provisions of what is considered a punishable offense.

In total, these statutes define what prosecutors and state officials regard as violations for improperly taking wildlife, carrying the wrong hunting provisions, and using computer-assisted remote hunting. They also describe the extent of punishment you could face if you are accused of violating one of these hunting laws.

According to §33-6-103, if you are caught and convicted of violating any hunting statutes, each violation shall “extend to and include every part of such wildlife, and a violation as to each animal or part thereof shall be a separate offense.” Two or more offenses could be charged in the same complaint, information, or indictment, and any proof as to part of an animal is sufficient to sustain a charge as if you had the whole animal. If convicted, you could also face hefty fines and a suspension of your license privileges.

If hunting is what you love, don’t take risks regarding your ability to continue doing it. You need an experienced Colorado wildlife defense attorney to defend your rights and your hunting privileges. Our lawyers’ first-hand hunting experience allows them to provide our clients with nuanced legal representation. We understand what you are going through, and we have assisted many hunters with various legal issues, such as Federal Lacy Act Violations, trespassing charges, and hunting without a permit. Whether you want to prepare for hunting season or have encountered an issue during hunting season, we can help. Let us take care of all the details and create a strategy that is custom-made for your defense.

Contact us at (720) 836-1777 or fill out our online form to schedule your free case evaluation today.

Colorado Fishing Heating Up

By Wildlife Lawyer on April 3, 2017

As warmer weather approaches, everyone is looking forward to spending time outdoors – especially Colorado anglers. Resisting the state’s assortment of over thirty different fish species, which range from stunning rainbow trout to hard-hitting northern pike, along with the state’s public access to 9,500 miles of streams, 2,000 natural lakes, and 800 reservoirs, is nearly impossible.

Unfortunately, however, a surprising number of anglers remain unaware of the numerous regulations that the state places on fishing. For example, Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) releases a myriad of rules each year that address everything from permissible bait to protected species. Furthermore, the regulations may vary depending on the waterbody, and there is no guarantee that last year’s standards are the same as this year’s. As a result, many well-intentioned fishermen can find themselves inadvertently outside of the law at the start of a new fishing season.

To prevent paying significant fines – or even losing their fishing rights altogether –Colorado anglers should ensure they understand all relevant CPW regulations before casting out their first lines. Such restrictions include bag limitations, species length requirements, proper licensure, fishing time limits, waterbody-specific rules, and more.

Many of these rules can be found in the 2017 Colorado Fishing Brochure, an up-to-date guide on the subject. As its numerous pages illustrate, there are various regulations pertaining to specific fishing areas. For example, Cherry Creek Reservoir, located in Arapahoe County, has a CPW special regulation that limits the take of walleye to only one fish longer than twenty-one inches per day. Conversely, Stagecoach Reservoir in Routt County also has a special regulation that puts no limitation on walleye takes for individuals.

For someone attempting to abide by the state’s fishing laws, the number of requirements necessary for compliance can be daunting. Furthermore, the CPW tickets individuals for rule violations, such as using live bait in a waterbody that only allows artificial flies and lures or unlawfully taking and possessing a fish species during a closed season.

Notably, the odds of committing a violation increase for individuals fishing in unfamiliar waters. Also, because these laws vary widely from state to state, it can be easy to fail to recognize a violation. For these reasons, making sure you’ve received reliable information before embarking on a fishing trip in Colorado is highly recommended.

Colorado’s 2017 fishing license sales began on March 15, and the upcoming season promises to draw many of us out to the water in search of a trophy catch. But, like any fishing season, it’s important to know what regulations you and your companions must abide by, especially considering that Colorado Parks and Wildlife Officers check for proper licenses and compliance with daily bag limits all season long.

At Welsh Law, LLC, we can assist you in ensuring compliance with all applicable laws on your next fishing trip. From expedition compliance planning to protect your rights if you’ve received a ticket, our experienced team of wildlife attorneys can help you get the most out of the 2017 fishing season – and enjoy it legally.

For additional consultation on Wildlife, Hunting, or related matters, please contact an experienced professional at Welsh Law, LLC at 866-477-8616 toll-free.

Cherry Creek Reservoir, South End

Cherry Creek Reservoir: South End (3/12/17)

Checkpoint Ahead – You better CHECK YOUR WILDLIFE because law enforcement is!

By Wildlife Lawyer on October 22, 2015

Is that a DUI sobriety check ahead? Nope that is a Wildlife Checkpoint!

Colorado Parks and Wildlife, is conducting one of the largest wildlife check stations in the state’s history. The CPW has set up a checkpoint near Idaho Springs and with the assistance of over 200 law enforcement officers from eight separate agencies in three states are operating around-the-clock fish and game checkpoint. This is only one checkpoint, but don’t be surprised when these checkpoints become the norm in the future.

Colorado law states: “The division is authorized to establish check stations…Persons who encounter check stations, whether in possession of wildlife or not, shall stop and produce licenses issued by the division, firearms, and wildlife for inspection by division personnel. Any person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor …”

If you get stopped and checked you better know your rights, because anything you say to the law enforcement officers “can and will be used against you”.

Colorado hunting laws also state that “Any person who hunts…, or possesses wildlife for any purpose shall produce all applicable licenses issued to him by the division, all firearms, all records required to be maintained …, and any personal identification documents when requested to do so by a district wildlife manager or another peace officer.

What are your rights as a hunter if stopped and questioned at one of these new hunting checkpoints? Contact an attorney at Wildlife Lawyers immediately to understand all of your rights as a Colorado outdoorsman.

You should always be polite, courteous, and cooperate within the bounds of your rights when interacting with a wildlife officer or peace officer. But if they start to ask you questions or interrogate you remember you have a right to remain silent and you have a right to an attorney. Know your rights ahead of time. Wildlife officers do not have to advise you of your rights if you are not in custody (i.e. a checkpoint). As a hunter you must educate yourself with the appropriate rules and regulations regarding hunting in Colorado. You must educate yourself with what you must produce when asked and what you do not have to produce when asked at a checkpoint.

The general rule is that a checkpoint is not the place to “come clean” with potential wildlife violations (crimes) you committed regardless if the officer says it will be better for you to tell them what happened. Wildlife officers are also criminal investigators. They are investigating potential wildlife crimes and anything you tell them may just help prove their case against you.

Officers may claim that things will go easier on you if you just come clean, but the reality is they will use what you say (admission) to prepare a case against you and you will be charged with a wildlife crime. Yes, wildlife tickets are crimes! Remember if you are convicted of a wildlife offense you likely will have a criminal conviction on your record, and you will have to pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars in fines and costs, and you could lose your hunting privileges. Under Colorado law, depending on what you are convicted of, you could lose your hunting privileges for anywhere from 1 year to a lifetime suspension (to include being suspended in the interstate wildlife compact states – 32 other states). has been representing big game hunters and fishermen throughout Colorado for over a decade. Our attorneys are former wildlife prosecutors, judges, and federal and state criminal defenders. Call our attorneys at 800-817-1106 for a free consultation today if you have any questions about your rights in the field.