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Bird "plinking" fyi

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Unread 03-13-2006, 03:27 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 172
Bird \"plinking\" fyi

Just wanted to toss out one fyi from the friendly neighborhood lawyer as I have seen here and elsewhere some passing references to shooting various asundry birds for target practice. All migratory birds are protected by federal law and it is a federal criminal offense to shoot them with any gun at anytime. The only exception to this basic rule are birds classified as game birds which have regulated hunting seasons, and then they are generally restricted to hunting with a shotgun. For non-migratory birds, most states have either identical or substantially similar laws. What are the odds of being caught? - Pretty low with the current low priority on conservation and game law enforcement in most areas. However, if you are caught, the penalties potentially are very severe and generally in the federal system there are no "first offense" slaps on the wrists. Remember all of that "tough on crime" rhetoric. If you break this law and are convicted, you are now a criminal who committed a "gun offense." An offense with a firearm in the federal system is very likely to lead to real prison time with significant fines, and likely the loss of the right to own a firearm for the remainder of your life. Again, the risk of being caught is low, but if it is the wrong place at the wrong time, you made the choice and will suffer the consequence. Also, even if there is no criminal prosecution, this is the kind of activity that is prone to stir up anti-hunting sentiments. Here in Texas, there have been two instances of hunters shooting and killing whooping cranes in the last 15 years. The most recent incident involved someone hunting ducks out of season, so he was in trouble even before the game warden found the whooping crane. One more point of legal trivia, most states generally prohibit the taking of any bird with a rifle, even when in season and classified as a gamebird. Again, in most states this would be classified as a "gun crime" and potentially subject the shooter to potentially serious legal consequences. So please think before you shoot.
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Unread 03-13-2006, 03:45 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: El Reno, OK
Posts: 1,497
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

In the Oklahoma hunting regulations crows can be taken with all firearms, archery, and legal raptors. The season is open most of the fall and winter and there is no legal limit.

I also could not find any evidance of crows being considered a migratory bird.

I am not sure if you were talking about crow shooting but I saw that some other guys had posted about it. Anybody shooting whooping cranes is just stupid

take it easy
Steve Elmenhorst
Third Generation Shooting Supply
"Products for shooters, by shooters"
monday-friday 8:30-5:30 CST
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Unread 03-13-2006, 03:53 PM
Gold Member
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Black Hills,South Dakota
Posts: 669
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

Unfortunately,here in South Dakota,they are considered migratory varmints....I mean birds. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]
The Constitution shall never be construed to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms -Samuel Adams
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Unread 03-13-2006, 04:07 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 2,369
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

Maybe the discussion came about because of the crows issue(s). In Maryland crows are listed as Upland Game and they may be hunted with rifles.

In Maryland the season on crows is Aug 15 - Mar 15
Wed - Sat Only.
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Unread 03-13-2006, 05:34 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Potomac River
Posts: 5,088
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

Very timely post and a good general warning. In addition to all the bad stuff Jeff said, you can get your truck and guns confiscated and sold at an auction just like if you were a drug dealer.

Some states have a depredation clause for crows, foxes blackbirds etc that deals with crop damage. Black birds is one of the most troubling of all of the birds because there is a state by state lsiting of which ones can be shot in which state and which ones are protected. Coloration of the females is difficult to determine and the males is very hard. In most states starlings and some of the blackbirds are legal. I used to enjoy shooting blackbirds but it is so very tricky which ones are which that I don't dare anymore

You have to go up on the Fed website under the migratory bird treaty and search for your state through a whole bunch of federal regulations and then get you a Petersens bird guide to figure it out.
The Smokin Fur Rifle Club
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Unread 03-13-2006, 09:14 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Blackfoot, Idaho
Posts: 8,876
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

O O, here's what I found: Darn [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]

Magpies are protected as migratory non-game birds under the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Under the Federal Codes of Regulation (CFR 50, 21.43) it is stated, however, that �a Federal permit shall not be required to control . . . magpies, when found committing or about to commit depredations upon ornamental or shade trees, agricultural crops, livestock, or wildlife, or when concentrated in such numbers as to constitute a health hazard or other nuisance. . . .� Most state or local regulations are similar, but consult authorities before taking any magpies.

and crows in Idaho:
2004: OCT 1, 2004–JAN 31, 2005
2005: OCT 1, 2005–JAN 31, 2006

Jeff, I guess I needed that......Thanks for the wakeup call
I may be the slowest guy on the mountain . . . . but . . . . I'm on the mountain!
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Unread 03-14-2006, 06:25 AM
Gold Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Texas born and raised
Posts: 752
Re: Bird \"plinking\" fyi

Here is a similar instance which might land you in some pretty deep hot water. Just presented as an example of "what could happen".
Man ticketed for hunting photo's posted on the net
Mike / Tx

My Photo's

"Heck why would I lie, most folks don't believe the truth when I tell them"
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