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The HSUS Applauds Pa. Legislature for Cracking Down on Poaching

The HSUS urges governor to sign measure

The Humane Society of the United States praised members of the Pennsylvania legislature for passing an important bill that will serve as a strong deterrent to poaching in the Keystone State.

H.B. 1859, introduced by Rep. Edward Staback, D-Lackawanna and Wayne, increases the penalties for a variety of poaching crimes and introduces felony level penalties for repeat poaching and "thrill-killing." 

"H.B. 1859 provides long-awaited upgrades to Pennsylvania's wildlife protection laws and will help curb the rampant poaching problem facing our state," said Sarah Speed, Pennsylvania state director for The HSUS. "The Humane Society of the United States urges Governor Rendell to sign this broadly supported bill into law."


  • Since 2008, The HSUS has offered more than $230,000 in reward funds for information leading to the arrest and conviction of criminals responsible for poaching.
  • Every year, thousands of poachers are arrested nationwide; however, it is estimated that only 1 to 5 percent of wildlife criminals are caught. Poachers kill wildlife anytime, anywhere and sometimes do so in particularly cruel ways.
  • "Thrill killers" often slay multiple animals in particularly vicious ways and usually don't bother to retrieve their kills.
  • Poachers exploit animals for personal gain or thrill, knowing they will most likely not be caught. With each conservation officer covering vast areas, strong penalties and collaboration with other states are essential components of any law enforcement effort.

For more information on poaching, please visit: humanesociety.org/poaching.



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The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the Web at humanesociety.org.

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