Pennsylvania Game News - October 2021 - 47

JULY COMMISSIONERS MEETING
Red Tag changes viewed Other meeting highlights
Pennsylvania's Board of Game Commissioners
preliminarily approved changes to the
agency's Agricultural Deer Control Program,
commonly known as the Red Tag Program. A
final vote was set for September.
The program is meant to help farmers address
crop-damage issues by letting hunters
take antlerless deer outside regular hunting
seasons. The potential changes were recommended
by those who use the program following
a meeting with the Game Commission's
Deer and Elk Section. They include:
* Individual hunters could get four permits
for a Red Tag property, rather than the current
one. The higher limit is consistent with that
in the Deer Management Assistance Program
(DMAP), which also helps landowners meet
their goals through antlerless hunting. Hunters
could keep all deer they harvest.
* The summer period during which Red
Tag hunting is closed (currently May 16-June
30) would be expanded to April 16-July 31.
Permits would be valid from Aug. 1 through
Sept. 15, then from Feb. 1 through April 15.
* Landowners no longer would be required
to report Red Tag harvests. Instead, similar to
DMAP, hunters would report for each permit
regardless of harvest success,
* All licensed hunters, not just Pennsylvania
residents, could participate.
* The red snap tags would be replaced with
standard harvest tags.
* Landowners no longer would need to enroll
in the Game Commission's Hunter Access
program before using the Red Tag program,
and Red Tag properties no longer would need
to be posted with signs.
If adopted, the measure become effective
in July 2022.
OCTOBER 2021
Game Commissioners gave
final approval to several changes
at their July meeting.
* Mentored hunters can
now pursue waterfowl and
bears. Those ages 7 and older
can purchase their own bear
licenses, while those under 7
can get a bear license from an
adult mentor.
Additionally, mentored hunters
ages 7 and older can now
buy their own special spring turkey
licenses. Mentors can also
transfer their special licenses to
those under age 7.
* Straight-walled centerfire
cartridges can now be used
statewide, including within Special
Regulation Areas, excluding
Philadelphia County and Tyler
and Ridley Creek state parks.
Straight-walled cartridges
lose velocity quickly, but can
be highly effective within 200
yards and often provide better
accuracy and considerably less
recoil that shotguns.
Hunters should be aware,
though, that it's now illegal to
use buckshot for deer hunting in
Special Regulations Areas.
* Beaver trap restrictions
have been eased in areas where
beaver and otter seasons overlap.
In
the past, trappers were
limited to using no more than
five traps or snares, no more
than two of which could be
body-gripping traps, during the
overlap with otter season and
for five days beyond.
Now, beaver trappers can
resume normal trap restrictions
when otter season closes.
47

Pennsylvania Game News - October 2021

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Pennsylvania Game News - October 2021 - Contents
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Pennsylvania Game News - October 2021 - Cover3
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