SB 77 regarding shooting preserves passed Second Reading with a hotly contested amendment introduced by Rep. Wolkins being adopted 47 to 46.
The Engrossed Senate Bill was a simple affair that prohibited establishing shooting preserves within one mile of a state owned game refuge or state public hunting ground — this reduces the radius from its current status at 5 miles. It also allowed the director of the department of natural resources to adopt rules prohibiting duck shooting on a shooting preserve.
Rep. Wolkins’ amendment adds provisions phasing out hunting and harvesting animals in shooting preserves by 2013 and prohibiting releasing an animal in a shooting preserve after 2011. Only persons who have obtained a shooting preserve license and proves that they allowed hunting in 2003, 2004, or 2005 will be allowed to get a license between 2006 and 2013.
Looks like Rep. Heim owes Rep. Wolkins a big “thank you” for making his legislation a lot harder to pass.
According to a story by Nikki Kelly in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, this is an effort by Rep. Wolkins to retaliate against DNR for deciding to shut down “high-fence deer operations.” He says it’s hypocritical for DNR to shut down canned deer hunting without going after pheasant and quail preserves.
I think Rep. Heim does an excellent job of shooting down (sorry) this line of reasoning:
Rep. Steve Heim, R-Culver, said the game preserve industry has a long history in the state, dating back to 1969.
He noted that 20 percent of the birds escape the preserves by flying away â€“ something deer cannot do.
â€œDeer run into fences,â€ Heim said. â€œIf a deer can have wings, it might be a fair comparison.â€
The article goes on to explain DNR’s position in the matter.
T B says
Can’t the wussies who “hunt” at these places just hunt each other?