Maine Revised Statutes

§12402. Damage to crops or orchards

1. Permission to kill nuisance animals or wild turkeys.  Except as provided in section 12404, the cultivator, owner, mortgagee or keeper of any orchard or growing crop, except all types of grasses, clover and grain fields, may take or kill wild animals or wild turkeys night or day when the wild animals or wild turkeys are located within the orchard or crop where substantial damage caused by the wild animal or wild turkey to the orchard or crop is occurring. For purposes of this section, corn is not considered grain.
[ 2003, c. 414, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF) .]
2. Employment of agents.  When a person wants to employ someone outside of that person's immediate family to take or kill wild animals or wild turkeys, that person shall contact a game warden. If the warden is satisfied that substantial damage is occurring, the warden may arrange for a department agent to alleviate the damage; when an agent is not available, the warden may authorize a person who is knowledgeable and can perform the work in a reasonable, safe and proficient manner. Permission to take or kill wild animals or wild turkeys may not be granted to a person whose license to hunt has been revoked or suspended, who is an habitual violator as defined in section 10605, subsection 1 or who has been convicted of night hunting within the past 5 years.
[ 2003, c. 414, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF) .]
3. Report to Maine Warden Service; dressing of carcass.  The person by whom or under whose direction the wild animal or wild turkey is wounded, taken or killed under this section shall:
A. Within 12 hours, report all the facts relative to the act to the Maine Warden Service, stating the time and place of the wounding, taking or killing; and [2003, c. 414, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF).]
B. In all cases of deer, bear, moose or wild turkey, immediately and properly dress the carcass or carcasses and care for the meat. When the meat is being distributed to recipients authorized under the Hunters for the Hungry Program established in section 10108, subsection 8, the person shall inform the department within 24 hours that the meat is ready to be picked up. [2007, c. 198, §1 (AMD).]
[ 2007, c. 198, §1 (AMD) .]
4. Warden's certificate.  A game warden shall investigate an incident under this section as soon as possible and, if the game warden is satisfied that the wild animal or wild turkey was taken as provided in this section, give the person who killed the wild animal or wild turkey a certificate that entitles the cultivator, owner, mortgagee or keeper of the orchard or growing crop to own the carcass or carcasses, which may be possessed and consumed only within the immediate family of the cultivator, owner, mortgagee or keeper of the orchard or growing crop, or, in accordance with the labeling requirements for possession of deer, bear, moose or wild turkey, to transfer possession of those wild animals or wild turkeys to another person. Any excess carcasses after the first 2 carcasses of bear, moose or wild turkey or after the first 3 carcasses of deer killed or taken under subsection 1 or 2 must be distributed to recipients authorized through the Hunters for the Hungry Program established in section 10108, subsection 8 or as otherwise authorized by the game warden.
[ 2007, c. 198, §2 (AMD) .]
5. Failure to report wounding, taking or killing of nuisance wild animal or to properly care for carcass.  A person may not:
A. Wound, take or kill a wild animal under section 12401 or this section unless the person reports all the facts relative to the incident to the Maine Warden Service within 12 hours; or [2003, c. 414, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF).]
B. Kill a deer, bear or moose pursuant to section 12401 or this section unless the person immediately and properly dresses the carcass and cares for the meat to prevent spoilage. [2003, c. 414, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF).]
A person who violates this subsection commits a Class E crime.
[ 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF); 2003, c. 655, Pt. B, §239 (AMD); 2003, c. 655, Pt. B, §422 (AFF) .]
SECTION HISTORY
2003, c. 414, §A2 (NEW). 2003, c. 414, §D7 (AFF). 2003, c. 614, §9 (AFF). 2003, c. 655, §B239 (AMD). 2003, c. 655, §B422 (AFF). 2007, c. 198, §§1, 2 (AMD).