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Thursday, April 24, 2014

California State Senator Tom Berryhill Announces Waterfowl Possession Bill Clears Assembly Policy Committee

Berryhill-tom

August 13, 2013 - Senator Tom Berryhill (R-Twain Harte) announces Senate Bill 392 (SB 392), a measure to provide hunters some clarity on the state’s game bird possession laws, has passed the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee.

Under current law there is confusion if the hunting limits on possession of game birds are violated when processing lawfully taken birds or mammals into food, like jerky or sausage, and storing for future consumption. Hunters are limited to a certain number of birds per day to prevent poaching. In practice, those birds are brought home and stored for future consumption. But does this violate the intention of possession limits? The answer has been unclear.

“Law abiding hunters will follow the law, but the law needs to be clear. Nobody wants to see poaching or other illegal practices occurring. That only hurts traditional hunters. But we do want the ability to process and store our legally taken game to share with our friends and family in the future. It is just part of the hunting heritage,” said Berryhill.

SB 392 will clarify ‘possession limits’ to processed game by directing the Fish and Game Commission to define when legally taken birds or mammals are no longer counted against the maximum possession numbers that would otherwise restrict the ability of hunters to freeze for food game taken on different days.

“I want to make it easier for Fish and Game to get rid of the bad actors. SB 392 will add clarity so that the Commission can weed out and appropriately punish the lawbreakers while allowing law abiding hunters and sportsmen to enjoy their legally taken game,” Berryhill added.

SB 392 would additionally allow for an alternate penalty for unintentional or minor violations relating to the proper tagging of game birds. For a novice hunter tagging can be quite confusing and result in innocent mistakes.

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