Colorado Parks and Wildlife: Common hunting violations can be costly

Every hunting season, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers issue thousands of tickets for violations that can result in steep fines for the offenders.

“While some of those tickets are for flagrant violations of wildlife regulations and hunting laws, many more are for minor violations that could have been avoided,” Parks and Wildlife reports in a recent news release.

“Hunters are reminded that not only can they be fined for violations, they can also lose their hunting privileges in Colorado and the 34 other states that cooperatively participate in a wildlife compact agreement.”

Rick Basagoitia, San Luis Valley area wildlife manager, says hunters need to review the Colorado Big Game Brochure to avoid costly mistakes.

The brochure outlines many common violations.

“Hunters must know their responsibilities when they get into the field,” Basagoitia says.

“Wildlife laws are written to protect a valuable resource and for safety.”

The following are some of the more common violations that occur every year:

• Not wearing fluorescent orange: You must wear at least 500 inches of daylight fluorescent orange, plus a head covering of the same color. Camouflage orange or mesh orange do not qualify.

• Carrying loaded firearms in or on vehicles: Rifles must not have ammunition in the chamber while in or on any motor vehicles. For those riding ATVs, weapons (rifles and bows) must also be in a closed and fully unloaded (chamber and magazine). Most accidents involving firearms occur in or near vehicles.

• Shooting from a road: Before firing a shot, you must be at least 50 feet off of a designated state or county road, and just off forest service or Bureau of Land Management roads.

• License not voided: After you kill an animal, you must void the license immediately.

• Improperly attached carcass tag: The carcass tag must be attached to the animal. The best way is to cut a hole in the hide and attach with a tie.