Shooting from motor vehicle law changed

Shooting from motor vehicle law changed Hunters going afield this fall are reminded that the legislature passed a new law that went into effect July 1, dealing with shooting from motor vehicles.

According to Division Staff Specialist for Law Enforcement Ron Catlin, the new law prohibits shooting from any motor vehicle at small game, big game, or waterfowl, regardless of where the vehicle is located. Under the previous law, small game, such as grouse or pheasants, could be shot from a motor vehicle if the vehicle was out in a pasture, in a picked cornfield, stubble field or other harvested fields.

"The new law prohibits shooting at any protected birds or animals directly from the vehicle unless that person has obtained a special handicapped permit from the department to do so," Catlin said.

Persons with physical handicaps that prohibit them from being able to stop from a vehicle without the use of a wheelchair, crutches, or other assistance may apply to the Department of Game, Fish and Parks for a special permit.

"Hunters should also be reminded that guns may not protrude from motor vehicles on public roads or highways," Catlin said. "This law that prohibits guns from sticking out of windows on vehicles traveling down a road has been on the books for many years, but each year a number of hunters receive citations for this violation."

While road rights-of-way generally open to small game hunting, except within 660 feet of dwellings, livestock, churches and schools, road rights-of-way are closed to big game hunting.

According to Catlin, shooting from a motor vehicle and carrying firearms protruding from the vehicle are not only safety concerns, but pose ethics and image concerns as well.

For other game and fish related questions, contact the Department of Game, Fish and Parks or a local conservation officer.

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