There are a bunch of hunting-related items in the pipeline for the Maine Legislature.
In fact, there are actually 30 separate bills remaining on the rolls this year related to hunting.
Every year, dozens of bills are introduced that target a variety of hunting-related topics. Although some eventually make their way to a legislative vote, many others fail to garner enough support to get past the committee level. This session, Mainers are pursuing more access to antlerless deer permits, Sunday hunting and changes to moose hunting seasons.
For example, among the bills being considered this session, there are six involving deer hunting. There also are five bills geared toward youth hunters and four pieces of legislation related to moose hunting.
The most common theme is a desire for free hunting permits or access to hunting.
For deer hunting, bills target the use of a subpermittee for a hunter age 70 or older, inclusion of an expanded archery permit as part of a Super Pack license and free youth lifetime hunting licenses for eligible dependents of veterans with disabilities.
There also are six bills related to antlerless deer permits. One would change the antlerless permit system to operate similar to the moose permit lottery and another would defer the $12 fee for an antlerless permit to the time a harvested animal is registered.
Free antlerless permits for certain landowners, based on either the size of their parcel or their willingness to allow hunting, also are the impetus of two other bills.
In other youth-related deer bills, there are proposals to extend Youth Deer Hunting Day to six days and to make youth day a two-day weekend — both of which would include Sunday — and another to prohibit wild turkey hunting on youth deer day.
For moose hunting, there are bills to increase the moose permit distribution rate for active military and veterans and to allow a household that receives more than one permit in a year to defer one until a future year.
There also is a bill directed at exempting unsuccessful adaptive moose hunt participants from being subject to the three-year ineligibility period incurred by all moose permit winners.
In addition to the two bills looking for Sunday hunting for youths, another piece of legislation would allow landowners to hunt on their own property on Sundays and another would permit hunting on Sunday with a bow and arrow or crossbow.
Here’s a full list of the bills below:
— LD 58: Resolve, Directing the Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to Establish Seasons That Do Not Overlap for Hunting Bear over Bait and Hunting Bear with Dogs
— LD 90: An Act to Allow Persons 70 Years of Age or Older to Use a Subpermittee to Harvest Deer
— LD 126: An Act to Improve the Fairness of Adaptive Management Study Moose Hunt Permits by Exempting Those Permittees from the 4-year Limitation on Receiving Another Permit
— LD 189: An Act to Include an Expanded Archery Permit in the Super Pack License Issued by the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
— LD 271: An Act Requiring the University of Maine System and the Maine Community College System to Offer a For-credit Course on Hunting, Fishing, Recreational Shooting and Trapping
— LD 305: An Act to Provide Youth Lifetime Hunting Licenses to Eligible Dependents of Veterans Who Are 100 Percent Disabled
— LD 458: An Act to Require an Application for a Hunting License to Include a Check-off Box Indicating an Applicant’s Wish to Be Entered in the Antlerless Deer Permit Lottery
— LD 481: An Act to Allow the Deferral of a Moose Hunting Permit If More than One Permit Is Awarded Within the Same Household
— LD 482: An Act to Extend the Time for Youth Deer Hunting
— LD 491: Resolve, to Require the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to Develop a Plan for Communication Regarding Certain Municipal Regulation
— LD 531: An Act to Add Gray Squirrels to the Species List for the Open Training Season for Hunting Dogs
— LD 544: An Act to Increase the Chance of Receiving a Moose Permit for Maine Service Members and Veterans
— LD 547: An Act to Amend the Hunting Laws as They Pertain to the Training of Dogs
— LD 604: An Act to Extend the Night Hunting Season for Coyotes to Immediately Following the Muzzle-loading-only Deer Hunting Season
— LD 608: Resolve, to Improve Outcomes for Participants in the Antlerless Deer Permit Lottery
— LD 613: An Act to Amend the Laws Governing the Antlerless Deer Permit Process
— LD 614: An Act to Provide a Free Antlerless Deer Permit to Certain Landowners Who Allow the Public to Hunt on Their Property
— LD 626: An Act to Preserve Maine’s Sporting Heritage and Enhance Sporting Opportunities for Maine’s Youth by Allowing Maine’s Youth to Hunt on Sunday
— LD 642: An Act to Protect Young Deer Hunters by Prohibiting Wild Turkey Hunting During Youth Deer Hunting Day
— LD 672: An Act to Establish Youth Deer Hunting Weekend
— LD 728: An Act to Amend the Bag Limit for Turkey
— LD 763: An Act to Provide Antlerless Deer Permits to Certain Landowners
— LD 795: An Act to Clarify Requirements for Moose Hunting Permittees
— LD 798: An Act to Eliminate the Antlerless Deer Permit Fee for Holders of Senior Complimentary and Senior Lifetime Hunting Licenses
— LD 814: An Act to Restrict the Daytime and Nighttime Killing of Coyotes
— LD 831: An Act Regarding Low Success Rates for Moose Hunting
— LD 1068: An Act to Ban the Hunting of Animals in Enclosed Areas
— LD 1084: An Act to Enhance Wildlife Conservation Efforts and Preserve Sporting Heritage by Making the Elements of a Hunter Safety Course a Part of Public School Curriculum
— LD 1166: An Act to Allow Sunday Hunting by Landowners on Their Land
— LD 1241: An Act to Allow Sunday Hunting with a Bow and Arrow or Crossbow