Rule May Affct PA Hunting, Trialing

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Game Commission Rule May Impact
Field Trials, Training In Pennsylvania

By JOHN YATES
American Sporting Dog Alliance
http://www.americansportingdogalliance.org

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Proposed rulemaking from the Pennsylvania Game Commission would require a permit to bring gamebirds and other species for wildlife into the state, or to release them. The rulemaking notice was published in today’s Pennsylvania Bulletin.

Several species of birds and animals are affected by the ruling, but two categories would affect gamebirds that are commonly used for field trials, bird dog training, hunt tests and preserve hunting.

Here is a quote from the proposed rulemaking: “Unless otherwise provided in this section or the act, it is unlawful for a person to import, possess, sell, offer for sale or release within this Commonwealth the following wild animals or wild birds or the eggs of the birds or a crossbreed or hybrid of the wild animals or wild birds, which are similar in appearance….”

One of the listed categories says that permits will be required for “game or wildlife held in captivity or captive bred in another state or nation.”

Under “persons affected,” it says: “Persons wishing to import, possess, sell or release exotic or nonindigenous wildlife, including nonhuman primates, within this Commonwealth will be affected by the proposed rulemaking.” The term “nonindigenous” means a species that is not native to Pennsylvania.

Pheasant are considered to be an exotic species because they are not native to America. They originally come from China. Chukars and Hungarian partridge also would fit in the exotic category, as they originated in Europe.

The rulemaking is somewhat confusing, as it refers both to wild animals, and also to game and wildlife held in captivity or captive-bred. Game farm quail stem originally from stocks of captured wild birds, and thus would appear to be included in this rulemaking.

The American Sporting Dog Alliance is urging hunters, field trialers and people who participate in hunt tests to make formal written comments in opposition to the part of this rulemaking that affects gamebirds. A formal comment means a letter written to express your opinion about the proposal.

Please send your comments to: Director, Information and Education, Game Commission, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797. The deadline is April 18, 2008.

The American Sporting Dog Alliance works to protect the rights of dog owners and professionals, and people who hunt with dogs. We maintain strict independence and are funded solely by the donations of our members. Please visit us on the web at http://www.americansportingdogalliance.org.

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