Presenter: Vernon Bevill

Commission Agenda Item No. 13
Action
2002-2003 Migratory Game Bird Proclamation
Late Season Provisions
August 2002

I. Discussion: Responsibility for establishing seasons, bag limits, means, methods, and devices for harvesting migratory game birds within U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) frameworks is delegated to the Commission under Chapter 64, Subchapter C, Parks and Wildlife Code. Also, Parks and Wildlife Code, §64.022, authorizes the Executive Director, after notification of the Chairman, to engage in rulemaking. Staff received permission from the Regulations Committee at its April 2002 meeting to publish the proposed regulations (located at Exhibit A) in the Texas Register for public comment. The proposed regulations appeared in the May 3, 2002 issue of the Texas Register (27 TexReg 3707). Staff has gathered and analyzed public comment, and a summary will be available at the time of the meeting. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) will issue regulatory frameworks for late-season species of migratory game birds in early August, and staff will apprise the commission of their impact upon the department's proposals.

III. Recommendation: Staff recommends that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

“The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopts amendments to 31 TAC §§65.318, 65.320, and 65.321, concerning the Migratory Game Bird Proclamation, with changes to the proposed text (located at Exhibit A) as published in the May 3, 2002, issue of the Texas Register (27 TexReg 3707).”

Attachment - 2
1. Exhibit A - Proposed late-season migratory game bird regulations
2. Exhibit B - Fiscal Note (Available upon request)


Commission Agenda Item No. 13
Exhibit A

Proposed Late-Season Migratory Game Bird Regulations

§65.318: Open Seasons and Bag and Possession Limits--Late Season. Except as specifically provided in this section, the possession limit for all species listed in this section shall be twice the daily bag limit.

(1) Ducks, mergansers, and coots. The daily bag limit for ducks is six, which may include no more than five mallards or Mexican mallards (Mexican duck), only two of which may be hens, three scaup, one mottled duck, one pintail, two redheads, one canvasback, and two wood ducks. The daily bag limit for coots is 15. The daily bag limit for mergansers is five, which may include no more than one hooded merganser. [No person may take a canvasback duck except during the period from December 27, 2001 through January 20, 2002.]

(A) High Plains Mallard Management Unit: October 19-21, 2002, and October 26, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 20-22, 2001 , and October 27, 2001-January 20, 2002].

(B) North Zone: October 26-27, 2002, and November 9, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 27-28, 2001 , and November 10, 2001-January 20, 2002].

(C) South Zone: October 26 - December 1, 2002, and December 14, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 27-November 25, 2001, and December 8, 2001-January 20, 2002].

(2) Geese.

(A) Western Zone.

(i) Light geese: October 26, 2002 - February 9, 2003 [October 27, 2001-February 10, 2002]. The daily bag limit for light geese is 20, and there is no possession limit.

(ii) Dark geese: October 26, 2002 - February 9, 2003 [October 27, 2001-February 10, 2002]. The daily bag limit for dark geese is five, which may not include more than one white-fronted goose.

(B) Eastern Zone.

(i) Light geese: October 26, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 27, 2001-January 20, 2002]. The daily bag limit for light geese is 20, and there is no possession limit.

(ii) Dark geese:

(I) White-fronted geese: October 26, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 27, 2001-January 20, 2002]. The daily bag limit for white-fronted geese is two.

(II) Canada geese and brant: October 26, 2002 - January 19, 2003 [October 27, 2001-January 20, 2002]. The daily bag limit is one Canada goose or one brant.

(3) Sandhill cranes. A free permit is required of any person to hunt sandhill cranes in areas where an open season is provided under this proclamation. Permits will be issued on an impartial basis with no limitation on the number of permits that may be issued. The daily bag limit is three. The possession limit is six.

(A) Zone A: November 9, 2002 - February 9, 2003[November 10, 2001-February 10, 2002]. The daily bag limit is three. The possession limit is six.

(B) Zone B: November 30, 2002 - February 9, 2003[December 1, 2001-February 10, 2002]. The daily bag limit is three. The possession limit is six.

(C) Zone C: December 21, 2002 –January 19, 2003[December 29, 2001-January 20, 2002]. The daily bag limit is two. The possession limit is four.

(4) Special Youth-Only Season. There shall be a special youth-only duck season during which the hunting, taking, and possession of ducks, mergansers, and coots is restricted to licensed hunters 15 years of age and younger accompanied by a person 18 years of age or older, except for persons hunting by means of falconry under the provisions of §65.320 of this chapter (relating to Extended Falconry Season--Late Season Species). Bag and possession limits in any given zone during the season established by this paragraph shall be as provided for that zone by paragraph (1) of this section. Season dates are as follows:

(A) High Plains Mallard Management Unit: October 12-13, 2002 [October 13-14, 2001];

(B) North Zone: October 19-20, 2002 [October 20-21, 2001]; and

(C) South Zone: October 19-20, 2002 [October 20-21, 2001].

§65.320. Extended Falconry Season - Late Season Species. It is lawful to take the species of migratory birds listed in this section by means of falconry during the following Extended Falconry Seasons.

(1) Ducks, coots, and mergansers:

(A)[(1)] High Plains Mallard Management Unit: no extended season; and

(B)[(2)] Remainder of the state: January 20 - February 3, 2003 [January 21 - February 4, 2002].

(2)[(b)] The daily bag and possession limits for migratory game birds under this section shall not exceed three and six birds, respectively, singly or in the aggregate.

§65.321. Special Management Provisions. The provisions of paragraphs (1)-(3) of this section apply only to the hunting of light geese. All provisions of this subchapter continue in effect unless specifically provided otherwise in this section; however, where this section conflicts with the provisions of this subchapter, this section prevails.

(1) Means and methods. In addition to the means and methods authorized in §65.310(a) of this title (relating to Means , Methods, and Special Requirements), the following means and methods are lawful during the time periods set forth in paragraph (4) of this section:

(A) shotguns capable of holding more than three shells; and

(B) electronic calling devices.

(2) Possession. During the time periods set forth in paragraph (4) of this section:

(A) there shall be no bag or possession limits; and

(B) the provisions of §65.312 of this title (relating to Possession of Migratory Game Birds) do not apply; and

(C) a person may give, leave, receive, or possess legally taken light geese or their parts, provided the birds are accompanied by a wildlife resource document from the person who killed the birds. The wildlife resource document is not required if the possessor lawfully killed the birds; the birds are transferred at the personal residence of the donor or donee; or the possessor also possesses a valid hunting license, a valid waterfowl stamp, and is HIP certified. The wildlife resource document shall accompany the birds until the birds reach their final destination, and must contain the following information:

(i) the name, signature, address, and hunting license number of the person who killed the birds;

(ii) the name of the person receiving the birds;

(iii) the number and species of birds or parts;

(iv) the date the birds were killed; and

(v) the location where the birds were killed (e.g., name of ranch; area; lake, bay, or stream; county).

(3) Shooting hours. During the time periods set forth in paragraph (4) of this section, shooting hours are from one half-hour before sunrise until one half-hour after sunset.

(4) Special Light Goose Conservation Period.

(A) From January 20, 2003 [January 21, 2002] through March 30, 2003 [March 31,2002], the take of light geese is lawful in the Eastern Zone as defined in §65.317 of this title (relating to Zones and Boundaries for Late Season Species).

(B) From February 10, 2003 [February 11, 2002] through March 30, 2003 [March 31, 2002], the take of light geese is lawful in the Western Zone as defined in §65.317 of this title (relating to Zones and Boundaries for Late Season Species).


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