EDMONTON -- Fish and Wildlife officers are investigating after three mule deer were shot and left to rot south of Vermilion earlier this week.

The dead deer were reported by concerned hunters who found them west of Highway 41 on Township Road 494 on Saturday, Nov. 16.

Witnesses also reported hearing shots in the area at around 4:30 p.m. and saw someone drive up to one of the dead deer, then drive away.

The vehicle was described as a 2019 dark-coloured Dodge Ram 1500 with bright white headlights, decals or stickers on a rear window and a possible slip tank or tool box in the back.

The driver was reportedly on his own and appeared to be short in stature and wearing a light-coloured baseball cap.

A similar case of a mule deer shot and left for dead was reported near the northern Alberta community of Hines Creek last month.

The deer was found the night of Saturday, Oct. 19. No arrests have been made or fines issued in that case.

Alberta's Wildlife Act states that hunters cannot kill a big game animal and abandon any flesh fit for human consumption.

Anyone with information on the latest incident is asked to contact the province's Report A Poacher line by calling 1-800-632-3800 or submitting a report on the province's website.