The following is a video transcript.
Deer hunting season is here, and hunters have been preparing for several months leading up to their hunting trips. But when was the last time you refreshed your knowledge of gun laws for deer season? Let’s talk about the three most important things you need to remember this season; licensing and firearm requirements, unlawful hunting activities and baiting. This is not a complete and exhaustive list, so be sure to consult Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources Publications, and the law before you hunt.
Licensing and firearms requirements
All hunters born after January 1st, 1961 must successfully complete a hunter education course before purchasing a hunting license, which is required in the State of Georgia, unless exempt by age or supervision. Hunter education is not required to hunt on one’s own land or the land of a parent or guardian residing in the same household. Next, all required hunting licenses and stamps must be in your possession while hunting or while assisting another hunter.
When can you hunt?
Legal hours for hunting deer are 30 minutes before sunrise until 30 minutes after sunset. All deer hunters are required to have a harvest record for the current season. Additionally, all harvests must be reported within 72 hours through Georgia’s game check or before leaving the deer with a processor.
Unlawful hunting activities
In Georgia, it is illegal to hunt without a landowner’s permission. This includes hunting along power lines, gas lines, railroads, and other rights of way. Any land you don’t own is out of bounds unless you have permission. It’s also illegal to hunt while under the influence of drugs or of alcohol. Hunters are forbidden to kill or cripple game without reasonable efforts to retrieve, to hunt, shoot, kill, or wound any farmed deer or exotic wild animal, to hunt or shoot across a public road or even hunt from a vehicle, plane, or boat under power.
In the State of Georgia, it is illegal to use a computer or any other device to remotely discharge a firearm for the purpose of hunting or to use drugs, poisons, chemicals, smoke, gas, explosives, or electronically amplified sounds to hunt any game species. Hunters may not use any pitfall, deadfall snare, catch net, live decoy, or baited hook to take game species or discharge a firearm within 50 yards of a public road.
What is bait? It’s corn, wheat, grain, salt, apples, and other feed that’s been placed, exposed, deposited, distributed, or scattered, so as to constitute a lure, attraction, or enticement to game animals or birds. In regard to baiting, it is unlawful for any person to hunt any game, animal, or game bird upon, over, or near the bait. In addition, they may not hunt any area for a period of 10 days following complete removal of all bait.
Hunters are also forbidden to hunt any big game or feral hog over bait or placed bait on any state or federally managed lands. The taking of any big game over bait is subject to a fine of $5,000 and, or imprisonment up to 12 months. There are, however, new exceptions for baiting deer. Deer may be hunted over or near any bait on private lands in all counties provided the hunter has written permission from the landowner.
Please remember this is not a complete and exhaustive list. Be sure to consult Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources Publications, and the law, before you hunt. For any questions regarding hunting laws, please call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.
Between the red tape and fine print, we know sportsman’s laws are tough and can be confusing. A single hunting violation can cost you thousands of dollars. Call us or log in to your member portal today and add HunterShield for game-changing protection.