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Wildlife officials say one or more poachers illegally shot eight mule deer in eastern Montana with a type of ammunition used for small game that likely caused the animals to suffer considerably.

Fish, Wildlife and Parks Warden Todd Tryan said in a statement Monday that one of the animals, a fawn, was found injured but still alive and had to be put down.

The animals were shot with a shotgun loaded with shells typically used to hunt pheasants.

They were found by a local resident Sunday morning in northern McCone County, where the dead deer were scattered along a two-mile stretch of road 528.

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Officials are asking for the public's help in identifying those responsible and offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to a conviction.


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