It is my understanding that the regulations approved by the board of commissioners at the end of September allowing the use of electronic decoys for waterfowl and dove hunting have been approved by the Attorney General's Office and have been sent to the PA Bulletin for printing. Won't be long now; perhaps 2 weeks. Please watch the PGC website for an announcement when they are published. Patience is a virtue!
Release # 74-17
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 17, 2017
For Information Contact:
717-705-6541 [email protected]
RECENTLYAPPROVED ELECTRONIC DEVICES NOW LAWFUL FOR HUNTING Use of approvedsemiautomatic rifles and air guns now permitted in Special Regulations Areas.
Four electronicdevices recently approved for use while hunting now may be used afield.
Within establishedseasons, hunters now may use electronic decoys in hunting waterfowl; electronicdove decoys solely for hunting doves; electronically heated scent or luredispensers; and electronic devices that distribute ozone gas for scent-controlpurposes.
The PennsylvaniaBoard of Game Commissioners in September gave final approval to a measure toallow the devices, but with all regulatory changes, the changes do not becomelaw until they are published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The changes willbe published in the Nov. 18 Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Electronic devicesgenerally are prohibited for hunting use in Pennsylvania, but the GameCommission over the years has received requests to review several specificelectronic devices, and has approved some of them for hunting use. As part ofthe review process, the Game Commission evaluates to what degree a given devicemight negatively impact the principles of resource conservation, equalopportunity, fair chase and public safety.
In reviewing thedevices that recently were approved for hunting use, the Game Commissionidentified no negative impacts that would result from their use.
Other electronicdevices that are permitted for use while hunting or trapping in Pennsylvaniaare:
∑Firearms that use an electronicimpulse to initiate discharge of their ammunition
∑Electronicsound-amplification devices incorporated into hearing protection devices andcompletely contained in or on a hunterís ear
∑Electronic devices usedfor locating dogs while training and hunting
∑Electronic illuminatingdevices affixed to the aft end of a bolt or arrow and used solely for locatingor tracking a bolt or arrow after it is launched
∑Electronic crow decoysused solely for hunting crows
∑Electronic rangefinders,including handheld devices and those contained within a scope or archery sight,so long that it does not emit a beam
The Nov. 18Pennsylvania Bulletin also contains regulatory changes that make it lawful touse semiautomatic rifles and air guns for hunting small game and furbearerswithin the stateís Special Regulations Areas.
Air guns need tobe between .177 and .22 caliber when used within Special Regulations Areas tohunt small game, woodchucks or furbearers.
Semiautomaticrifles need to be .22 caliber rimfire or less to hunt small game, woodchucks orfurbearers within Special Regulations Areas.
These requirementsvary slightly from those applying elsewhere in the state, where air guns usedfor small game must be between .177 and .22 caliber; and .22 caliber or largerwhen hunting woodchucks and furbearers.
Outside of SpecialRegulations Areas, semiautomatic rifles must be.22 caliber rimfire or less whenused for small game, and there is no caliber restriction for woodchucks orfurbearers. Only single-projectile ammunition may be used.
SpecialRegulations Areas include all of Allegheny, Bucks, Chester, Delaware,Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, and Ridley Creek and Tyler state parksduring special controlled hunts.
Last week I was at a local lake and a guy from Ohio was set up on an adjacent island and he was running 3 spinning wing decoys. All he decoyed were divers. I had just as many come into my decoys. The lake was dead calm. Didn't see any advantage.