An Act To Expand Turkey Hunting
Sec. 1. 12 MRSA §11109, sub-§3, as corrected by RR 2011, c. 1, §15, is amended to read:
Sec. 2. 12 MRSA §11155, as amended by PL 2009, c. 213, Pt. OO, §8, is repealed.
Sec. 3. 12 MRSA §11701, as amended by PL 2003, c. 552, §9 and affected by §15 and c. 614, §9 and amended by c. 655, Pt. B, §179 and affected by §422 and Pt. C, §§2 and 6, is further amended to read:
§ 11701. Authority of commissioner; wild turkey hunting
The commissioner may establish open seasons for hunting wild turkeys, designate areas that are open to the taking of wild turkeys in any part of the State, prescribe the form and regulate the number of permits to be issued, determine the number and sex of the birds to be harvested, establish bag limits, establish permit eligibility requirements, establish legal hunting times, specify the types of weapons to be used during any open wild turkey hunting season and make any other rules that the commissioner considers necessary for the protection of the wild turkey resource. The commissioner shall:
A person who violates this section commits a Class E crime for which the court shall impose a fine of not less than $500, none of which may be suspended. The court also shall impose a fine of $500 for each turkey unlawfully possessed, none of which may be suspended.
Sec. 4. 12 MRSA §12301-A, sub-§1, as enacted by PL 2003, c. 655, Pt. B, §226 and affected by §422, is amended to read:
Sec. 5. 12 MRSA §12302-A, sub-§1, ¶¶B and C, as enacted by PL 2003, c. 655, Pt. B, §228 and affected by §422, are amended to read:
This bill expands turkey hunting opportunities by:
1. Eliminating the turkey permit requirements and allowing the hunting of turkey with a big game or small game hunting license;
2. Providing for electronic or telephonic registration of turkeys; and
3. Requiring the Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to establish spring and fall hunting seasons in which hunting is allowed during all daylight hours. The fall season must include the month of October, and in both seasons a person may take up to 2 turkeys; in the spring season both must be male.