Originally Posted by mauser06
Keep in mind you often aren't talking to an actual Wildlife Conservation Officer when you call.
Same with the State Police. If you call one of their station numbers you are very most likely talking to a civilian dispatcher.
Now, whoever answers the phone may or may not know the actual answer to your questions...they shouldn't be giving wrong information either.
Questions on the phone are also tough to give a perfect answer to because there are often unknowns and other factors come into play. Believe me...I worked as a dispatcher for an agency...the questions people call with and the way questions are asked it's tough to give a perfect clear cut answer because the questions aren't that simple..
I'm sure the question wasn't cut and dry like "what day does dove season start". Or do i need a archery license to hunt with a crossbow etc...
At the end of the day 2 people's answer will matter. The WCO enforcing the violation and the district magistrate that the hearing will be in front of. (Then higher courts if you so desire).
With game laws it's often best to try to get in touch directly with the WCO covering your area if you have something truly questionable...
Of course this is all my opinion and 3 cents so take it for what it's worth...I'm no lawyer and know nothing about law enforcement.
That is pretty much exactly as it is and some of the best advice you can get.
The place to start looking for the correct answer, and the correct answer really can vary in different areas of the state, are here in the digest. If it is an area specific question though you need to make sure you are looking at the right WMU.
If you want to know what the law is you can find it in the following link. But, the law can sometimes be hard to read and understand for a person who doesn't have a legal background.
Then a person has to understand that laws are long term and set by the State legislature through the bill making process. Since they don't want to go back and rewrite the laws several times a year the law also authorizes and allows the Agency to establish regulations for various things such as seasons, methods of hunting, etc, that are constantly in need of change. Those regulations then become the same as the law itself if they are within the purview of the authority established in the law itself.
The regulations established under the authority of the Game law are as follows:
Then you also have federal laws that govern some aspects of hunting, especially when it comes to the migratory species and those generally supersede the state laws, including the hunting hours which might very well be different than what are established in the state law.
Are you starting to figure out yet how a dispatcher could give you information that would be correct for their area that might be incorrect for another area or that some questions don't have a real clear yes or no answer?