Bruce Ajari | National Geographic program details game wardens’ duties | SierraSun.com
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Bruce Ajari | National Geographic program details game wardens’ duties

Bruce Ajari
Gone Fishin'

Here’s something for everyone to watch on TV. Have you ever wondered just what a game warden’s job entails here in California? Wild Justice is a new television show that will air on the National Geographic Channel.

The show premiered Sunday, Nov. 28. It follows California Fish and Game wardens during some of their daily duties. There were two episodes shown back-to-back on Sunday. Another show is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 1 at 10 p.m. Regular programming will be Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on the National Geographic Channel.

I tuned in late to the first episode, but watched the second in its entirety. Game wardens perform an extremely difficult job. There are only a handful of them to cover an area of 159,000 square miles, as well as 1,100 miles of coastal waters.

Being a warden is an often solitary and, at times, an extremely dangerous job. They are often in very remote areas looking for law-breakers with backup often a great distance away.

As the National Geographic Channel describes the wardens, and#8220;They defend against human threats to the environment, endangered wildlife and the cultivation of illegal drugs. On foot, by car or off-road vehicle, by plane or by boat, game wardens do it all. As the only line of defense in these sparsely populated and often deadly places, this small group of law enforcement officers is constantly in pursuit of poachers, polluters and illegal marijuana growers, while still making sure hunters and anglers follow the rules.and#8221;

These guys really put themselves on the line and are extremely capable men dedicated to the job at hand. My nephew is among what they call the Thin Green Line and#8212; the California Fish and Game wardens. I am very proud of him and his associates.

You will be impressed by the diversity of their job as you watch the show. Whether contacting hunters and trying to prevent the sale of illegal game parts, or going to the commercial establishments, such as a segment in San Francisco’s Chinatown, warden’s are out there trying to protect our dwindling natural resources.

One segment that really made me appreciate how dangerous the job can be was in Episode 2 when a warden stops a group of six men who appear to be getting ready to grow some Marijuana. One of them is an obvious gang member and has done prison time. You wonder how a single warden has the wherewithal to be able to control a group such as this. This was a situation that could have gone bad in a hurry.

Marijuana growing on public lands is becoming a huge issue and wardens are there on the front line of this battle. Because they are out in these remote areas, they often are the first to find these illegal operations.

Watching this show will give everyone who appreciates our environment and wildlife a sense of just what these handful of underpaid officers actually do. They deserve to be paid on a par with other state law enforcement officers.

It is certainly worth watching.

and#8212; Bruce Ajari is a Truckee resident and regular fishing columnist for the Sierra Sun.


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