New Georgia Game Wardens Carla Gann and Jason Warren are living the dream.
Gann knew she wanted to play a role in protecting natural resources since she was a child playing in mountain creeks. Warren said he loves the diverse roles that game warden play, from riding a boat one day to being out in the woods on foot the next.
Both Gann and Warren are part of the response to a concerted effort by the Department of Natural Resources to step up its enforcement units numbers to make outdoor recreation safe and fun across the state.
Both are assigned to duties in Floyd, Chattooga, Gordon, Walker and Dade counties, but are based in Floyd County.
Warren said one of the most challenging aspects of his job is not knowing what the next day will bring.
“It could be fishing one day, and you might have to go out on a boat to look for a body the next,” Warren said. “You never know what’s coming.”
Gann shared a similar sentiment about the challenges associated with the job.
“You may have the day planned out and then all of a sudden you could have an incident happen and your plans get shifted,” Gann said. “You always expect the unexpected.”
Neither of the young wardens have been on the job long enough to hear all of the excuses violators come up with, but both have already heard some interesting tales.
Warren said one person told him he had just moved here. In reality, that person just moved back here after being gone for a year or so. Gann chuckled and said she often hears people complain about any given regulation by saying something like “Alabama doesn’t require it, so Georgia shouldn’t require it.”
Gann said the most common water violation she has come across involves not having enough personal flotation devices for boaters. Warren said that when it comes to hunting violations, the lack of sufficient orange gear is one he comes across pretty often, followed by the necessity to have a hunting license on the person.
Both Gann and Warren have spent a lot of time at the Rocky Mountain Public Fishing Area with a focus on making sure visitors don’t bring alcoholic beverages into the recreation area. Sergeant Mike Barr, their supervisor, also said the new wardens have focused on making sure visitors purchase their daily parking passes because those funds are what helps maintain the area.