Warden Buuck shoots injured buck

IMG_2509Two young local fellas stopped their truck beside Linda and me on Tuesday as we were out for a walk, and asked if they could park in our driveway to access nearby Hopkins Pond where they enjoy ice fishing. We said sure and told them to park beside the garage at the very end of the driveway, and continued walking.

A few minutes later they drove back and asked if we knew there was an injured deer in our wood shed. Well, no we didn’t!

IMG_2510They said the young buck had an injured hind leg and was in bad shape, unable to walk. So I hurried back to the house, where they joined me, and took a look. It was a good thing they’d pulled up at the end of the driveway, because we never would have seen that deer, down behind a mound of snow at the end of our driveway.

And the deer was clearing hurting, unable to move. He had crawled slightly forward to the front of the wood shed, but laid there, staring at us standing just a few feet away.

I called our local game warden, Ethan Buuck, whose house is just a couple of miles away, and was fortunate to catch him at home. And he came right over.

I have to say, right here, that Ethan has impressed all of us in this area. He’s a great young man and a very good warden.

When Ethan peeked over the pile of snow, the deer panicked and crawled between two piles of wood and right out into the bushes in back of the shed. We could see him lying there. Ethan quietly walked up between the piles of wood, pulled out his pistol, and shot the deer, putting him out of his misery.

As the buck had crawled away from us, we could all see his mangled right rear leg, and decided he must have been hit by a motor vehicle.

The two young ice anglers, Josh Gordon and Ean Lafflin, are also avid hunters, and asked if they could have the deer. So of course I agreed to that, and Ethan wrote them out a permit on a piece of paper. The permit number is really all they’d need to get the deer butchered.

The guys loaded the deer into the back of their truck and headed back to the pond to fish. I told them they’d have quite a fishing tale to tell!

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website, georgesmithmaine.com, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.