Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Login Register Subscribe
Subscribe to AON
Welcome to Alabama Outdoor News!
Search:  

Subscribe to AON


Catfish Special : Top Bama Picks

July Bass On : Lake Guntersville

Small-Lake : Fishing Gems

100-Pound : Neely Henry Blue Catfish


Home
CAB Passes Encroachment Fine For Dog Deer Hunters, Sets 2017-2018 Hunting Seasons
 
By Mike Bolton
Posted Tuesday March 28 2017, 3:04 PM
 
Under a new regulation passed by the Conservation Advisory Board, deer-dog owners can receive two written warnings for their dogs trespassing on other’s properties before they will be ticketed for a third infraction.
   Enlarge Image
Dog hunters are not unfamiliar with having to hunt under a number of regulations in Alabama. They’ll now be hunting under a new one when the 2017-2018 season rolls around.

The Conservation Advisory Board approved a “dog encroachment regulation” on March 4 during its second meeting of the year, which was at Lake Guntersville State Park. The regulation sets a path for dog hunters who continually have dogs that get on surrounding properties to be ticketed and fined.

Under the regulation, the first and second time a hunter’s dog or dogs wander on someone else’s property, and the violation is documented by a game warden, the dog’s owner will receive a written warning.

On the third offense documented by a game warden, the dog’s owner will be ticketed. If the dog’s owner is found guilty in court, the judge will determine the amount of the fine.

Under Alabama law, hunting dogs are required to have collars that carry the name of the dog’s owner, his or her address and phone number.

Chris Lewis, the assistant chief of Conservation Law Enforcement for WFF, said the regulation will give officers a way to address hunting dog owners who continually allow their dogs to wander on others properties without penalizing entire dog hunting clubs.

Lonnie Miller, the president of the Alabama Dog Hunters Association, asked the CAB not to implement the measure, saying it constitutes double jeopardy on those under the state’s dog hunting permit system.

A dozen counties or parts of counties in Alabama are under the dog hunting permit system, meaning dog hunting clubs in those areas must be registered and permitted. If officials receive continued complaints from a club, the club’s permit can be revoked.

Miller said he feared that if a club had a problematic member who was charged after three or more violations, or a handful of members with single violations, all of those complaints would count against the club.

Miller said that he was told by WFF officials after the meeting that the intent of the new regulation was to punish problematic individuals, not clubs that were acting responsibly. Miller says his 1,500-member organization does not oppose the new regulation if that is the case, but he doesn’t see how the regulation can be effective.

“It’s like everything else,” Miller said. “It won’t affect the law-abiding hunter, and the ones that operate illegally will find a way around it.

“If a person gets two written warnings, they’ll go get new collars made with their wife’s name listed as the dog owner, and when they get two more, they’ll get new collars with their kids listed as owners.”

Chuck Sykes, the director of WFF, said he doesn’t believe law-abiding dog hunter should be against the measure.

“What this regulation does is it penalizes the problem,” he said. “It penalizes the person with the dog that is causing the issue, not the whole club or county. They should be jumping up and down for this. The good folks should be saying this is exactly what we need because the bad dog hunters are giving us a bad name.”

In other actions, the CAB approved the creation of a “Bonus Buck” program that will be implemented on certain WMAs during the 2017-2018 season.

The program will allow hunters on designated WMAs, on specific dates, to harvest a buck that will not count against the hunter’s statewide three-buck limit. The reason for the regulation is to gain better data on bucks from WMAs, WFF officials said.

The “Bonus Bucks” taken must be brought to the check station at the WMA and checked by WFF officials to be legal.

With little fanfare, the CAB adopted the 2017-2018 hunting season dates and other regulations proposed by ADCNR in the February meeting. For the first time in years, there were no major changes to the deer season hunting dates or hunting zones.

All of the hunting seasons dates, except for some new duck hunting dates and regulations in specified areas in north Alabama, were virtually unchanged from the 2016-2017 seasons.

The only significant changes the CAB made concerned waterfowl hunting at several north Alabama WMAs. Several CAB members in north Alabama districts said they sought input from duck hunters in their areas before deciding to how best address the issue of overhunting on those WMAs.

WFF personnel recommended several changes for the Swan Creek WMA Dewatering Unit. Hunting will now be closed on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to serve as rest days for waterfowl. Hunting will be allowed from 30 minutes before sunrise until sunset.

In Jackson County, in extreme northeast Alabama, the Mud Creek and Raccoon Creek Dewatering Units will change from a Monday and Tuesday closure to a Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday closure. The CAB approved a ban on boats with gasoline-powered motors in the Mud Creek Dewatering Units and Raccoon Creek Dewatering Units north of Highway 117. Hunting hours are the same as Swan Creek’s.

There will also be a Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday closure at Crow Creek WMA. That WMA will have the same shooting hours as the other areas.

At Swan Creek, Raccoon Creek, Mud Creek and Crow Creek WMAs, hunting will be allowed every day of the week during the last two weeks of the season.

Hunters will be limited to 25 shotshells on all of the above units, and no boats can be launched prior to 4 a.m. at any of the WMAs.


2017-2018 Deer Hunting Seasons

Archery:
Zones A, B & C:

Oct. 14-Feb. 10
(Zone B is Bucks-Only Oct. 14-23)
 
Gun Season:

Zone A:
Private/Leased Land:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Public/Open Permit Land:
Antlered bucks only:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Either-sex:
Dec. 15 - Jan. 1
Dog deer hunting where allowed:
Nov. 18-Jan. 15

Zone B:
Private/Leased Land:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Public/Open Permit Land:
Antlered bucks only:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Either-sex:
Dec. 15 - Jan. 1
Dog deer hunting where allowed:
Nov. 18-Jan. 15

Zone C:
Private/Leased Land:
Antlered bucks only:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Either-Sex:
Nov. 18-Nov. 20
Dec. 22-Jan. 1

Public/Open Permit Land:
Antlered bucks only:

Nov. 18 - Feb. 10.
Either-sex:
Nov. 18-Nov. 26
Dec. 22-Jan. 1

Dog deer hunting where allowed:
Bucks only:

Nov. 18-Jan. 15
Either-sex:
Nov. 18-Nov. 26
Dec. 22-Jan. 1

All Zones:
Youth Weekend:

Nov. 10-13

Special muzzleloader season:
Nov. 10-13
 
 
 
 
 
© 2017 Alabama Outdoor News