With hunting season kicking into gear, the Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Division and the Department of Fish & Wildlife (ODFW) provide the following reminders and tips to keep your outdoor adventures memorable and trouble free:
* Oregon Disabilities Hunting Permit Information - Bag limits have changed in many of the Wildlife Management Units; particularly in regards to the harvest of antlerless deer, and in some cases antlerless elk. Many units now only allow subjects with Disabilities Permits to harvest legal bucks or bulls. Refer to page 88 of the 2012 Oregon Big Game Regulations (http://tinyurl.com/8hkke4646) for more information.
* Know Before You Go - Every hunting season law enforcement officers deal with many trespassing complaints because hunters go onto property without considering or knowing ownership, or they think it's permissible to trespass when tracking a wounded animal or retrieving an animal from the other side of a property boundary or fence. REMEMBER: It is the responsibility of any hunter to know whose property they are on. Hunters need to contact the landowner and ask for permission prior to entering private property. The landowner has the right to deny access.
* Hunter Orange - Oregon requires youth hunters age 17 and under to wear hunter orange when hunting all game mammals and upland birds (except turkey) with any firearm. It's also strongly recommended for adults, too. Refer to pages 6 and 27 of the 2012 Oregon Big Game Regulations for more information.
* Tagging and Possession - Oregon law requires hunters who harvest an animal to immediately validate the appropriate tag by completely removing the month and day the animal was harvested and securely attaching the tag to a portion of the animal.
* Please be Careful with Fire - Practice fire safety at all times. This year has been a busy fire season so be aware of any fire restrictions for the area you intend to hunt. You wouldn't want to lose your home to a fire, and neither does the wildlife that call Oregon's outdoors their home. Check with the land manager and see Oregon Department of Forestry's webpage on private lands access and phone numbers of local districts to check fire restrictions.
* Respect Road Closures - Road closures are in place to conserve wildlife and improve the hunting experience. It's very important to respect closures on private land so access to hunters remains open.
* Report Wildlife Violations - You can help protect Oregon's wildlife and natural resources by reporting violations. If you observe someone violating the law in the field please call the Turn in Poachers (TIP) line at 1-800-452-7888. Helpful information includes the date, time, location, type of violation, a description of the subject(s), and any information if a vehicle is involved, including a license plate number if possible. Rewards may be offered for information leading to the prosecution of violators through the TIP Reward Fund sponsored by the Oregon Hunter's Association.
* Alcohol & Firearms Don't Mix - Many hunting accidents in Oregon each year are preventable, and alcohol is often a factor in these incidents. Wait to celebrate your daily hunting adventures at the end of the day when weapons are safely secured at home or in camp. Always remember and practice basic firearms safety:
- Keep your firearm's muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
- Keep your finger outside of the trigger guard until ready to shoot.
- Treat every firearm as if it were loaded.
- Be sure of your target and what is in front of it and beyond it.
- Wear blaze orange.
Questions can be directed to your local office of the Oregon State Police or Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife.
### www.oregon.gov/OSP ###