Outside Questions and Answers: What Kind of Law Enforcement Work Do CDFW’s K-9 Teams Do? | Outside
Question: What type of law enforcement work do the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) K-9 teams do?
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s K-9 law enforcement dog does a lot of tricks. (Courtesy photo)
A: Established in 2006, CDFW’s K-9 program currently has 16 teams working statewide in just about every area of law enforcement within the department, including cannabis law enforcement. , Marine Law Enforcement, and the CDFW Spill Prevention and Response Office, the state’s official for oil spill response.
The K-9s help wildlife officers enforce our state’s many laws relating to the protection of natural resources. CDFW’s K-9s are primarily used for their detection capabilities, which allow them to sniff out evidence, illegally harvested game, narcotics, contraband, and invasive species like quagga mussels.
K-9 CDFWs are also part of dual-use teams and, in addition to detection, are used to help protect wildlife officers and apprehend suspects. A K-9 can serve as a wildlife officer’s primary backup when no one else is available. All of CDFW’s K-9 teams can also be used in search and rescue to help locate missing persons or fleeing suspects.
The K-9s are an exceptional public relations tool and are often used in schools and public events to bridge the gap between community and law enforcement. The K-9 program is a tremendous asset to the law enforcement division of CDFW in the accomplishment of its mission.
Question: I recently went on a fishing trip with a group of friends on a commercial fishing boat out of the Bay Area. The captain of the boat checked to make sure we all had fishing licenses and explained that he could get a ticket to let unauthorized fishermen fish out of his boat. If I let someone who does not have a license fish on my personal boat, will I also receive a ticket?
A: Operators of commercial passenger fishing vessels are subject to more stringent standards than owners of private vessels and must comply with Section 7920 of the California Fish and Game Code (FGC), which deals with the licensing of commercial fishing vessels to passengers.
Article 7920 of the FGC states: The owner of any boat or vessel which, for profit, allows any person to catch fish, must obtain a commercial passenger fishing vessel license. This article only applies to a boat or vessel the owner or his employee or other representative accompanying when it is used for fishing.
A person operating a guide boat, as defined in section 46 of the FGC, is not required to obtain a commercial passenger fishing vessel license.
In addition, Section 7147 of the FGC describes the licensing requirements for persons fishing from a boat or vessel, which are: a, in their possession, a valid California sport fishing license and any required stamp, bulletin or validation issued in accordance with this code.
To recap: As a private boat owner, if you let someone fish from your boat without a fishing license, you would not be subject to article 7147 of the FGC. Of course, we encourage you to make sure that the passengers on your private boat still have a fishing license. .
Question: When an animal is injured or sick, what gives the CDFW the power to euthanize it rather than release it and let it die naturally?
A: The decision to euthanize a wild animal is one of the most difficult decisions the CDFW makes as the California Fish and Wildlife Administrator. CDFW’s mission is to manage California’s diverse fish, wildlife and plant resources, and the habitats on which they depend, for their ecological values and for their public use and enjoyment.
The majority of these efforts relate to habitat enhancement, preservation or management. To this end, the main objective of the CDFW is the stabilization of populations of fish and wildlife and the management of these populations for the benefit of the species and the public enjoyment of these species.
When a sick or injured animal shows up, often as a result of a public report, CDFW science staff and wildlife officers have a lot to think about when we assess the situation.
If the animal is injured but has even a minimal chance of surviving, CDFW usually gives it a chance to survive on its own. However, if the animal has suffered a fatal injury or is suffering from a terminal illness and is going to die, then staff can humanely euthanize the animal to end its suffering and sometimes stop the spread of a sickness.
Article 1001 of the FGC entrusts and confers on the CDFW the authorization to take these decisions. The law states: “Nothing in this code or in any other law prevents the department from taking, for scientific purposes, propagation, public health or safety, prevention or alleviation of suffering, or for purposes law enforcement, fish, amphibians, reptiles, mammals, birds and their nests and eggs, or any other form of plant or animal life.