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Searching 2017-2018 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 10: Conservation and Development

Chapter 113: GAME

  • Subchapter 001: GENERAL PROVISIONS
  • § 4701. Use of gun, bow and arrow, and crossbow; legal day; dogs

    (a) Unless otherwise provided by statute, a person shall not take game except with:

    (1) a gun fired at arm's length;

    (2) a bow and arrow; or

    (3) a crossbow as authorized under section 4711 of this title or as authorized by the rules of the Board.

    (b) A person shall not take game between one-half hour after sunset and one-half hour before sunrise unless otherwise provided by statute or by the rules of the Board.

    (c) A person may take game and fur-bearing animals during the open season therefor, with the aid of a dog, unless otherwise prohibited by statute or by the rules of the Board. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1997, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2013, No. 78, § 12.)

  • § 4702. Use of light

    A person shall not intentionally throw or cast the rays of a spotlight, jack, or other artificial light on any highway, or any field, woodland, or forest, in order to spot, locate, take, or attempt to take, spot, or locate any wild animal. However, a light may be used to take skunks and raccoons in accordance with rules of the Board. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 31; 1993, No. 236 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1995, No. 8, § 1, eff. March 28, 1995.)

  • § 4703. Use of set guns; recovery for damage

    A person shall not at any time set or use any device, the object of which is to discharge a firearm for the purpose of taking any wild animal. A person violating this section shall be liable for twice the amount of damage caused by his or her act to be recovered by a person damaged thereby, in a civil action on this section. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4704. Use of machine guns, autoloading rifles, and gun suppressors

    (a) A person engaged in hunting for wild animals shall not use, carry, or have in his or her possession:

    (1) a machine gun of any kind or description;

    (2) an autoloading rifle with a magazine capacity of over six cartridges, except a .22 caliber rifle using rim fire cartridges; or

    (3) a gun suppressor.

    (b) As used in this section, "gun suppressor" means any device for silencing, muffling, or diminishing the report of a portable firearm, including any combination of parts, designed or redesigned, and intended for use in assembling or fabricating a gun suppressor, and any part intended only for use in such assembly or fabrication. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 2015, No. 61, § 16, eff. July 2, 2015.)

  • § 4705. Shooting from motor vehicles or aircraft; shooting from or across highway; permit

    (a) A person shall not take, or attempt to take, a wild animal by shooting from a motor vehicle, motorboat, airplane, snowmobile, or other motor propelled craft or any vehicle drawn by a motor propelled vehicle except as permitted under subsection (e) of this section.

    (b) A person shall not carry or possess while in or on a vehicle propelled by mechanical power or drawn by a vehicle propelled by mechanical power within the right of way of a public highway a rifle or shotgun containing a loaded cartridge or shell in the chamber, mechanism, or in a magazine, or clip within a rifle or shotgun, or a muzzle-loading rifle or shotgun that has been charged with powder and projectile and the ignition system of which has been enabled by having an affixed or attached percussion cap, primer, battery, or priming powder, except as permitted under subsections (d) and (e) of this section. A person who possesses a rifle or shotgun in or on a vehicle propelled by mechanical power, or drawn by a vehicle propelled by mechanical power within a right of way of a public highway shall upon demand of an enforcement officer exhibit the firearm for examination to determine compliance with this section.

    (c) A person while on or within 25 feet of the traveled portion of a public highway, except a public highway designated Class 4 on a town highway map, shall not take or attempt to take any wild animal by shooting a firearm, a muzzle loader, a bow and arrow, or a crossbow. A person while on or within the traveled portion of public highway designated Class 4 on a town highway map shall not take or attempt to take any wild animal by shooting a firearm, a muzzle loader, a bow and arrow, or a crossbow. A person shall not shoot a firearm, muzzle loader, a bow and arrow, or a crossbow over or across the traveled portion of a public highway, except for a person shooting over or across the traveled portion of a public highway from a sport shooting range, as that term is defined in section 5227 of this title, provided that:

    (1) the sport shooting range was established before January 1, 2014; and

    (2) the operators of the sport shooting range post signage warning users of the public highway of the potential danger from the sport shooting range.

    (d) This section shall not restrict the possession or use of a loaded firearm by an enforcement officer in performance of his or her duty.

    (e) Subsections (a) and (c) of this section shall not apply to a licensed hunter with paraplegia or who is certified by a physician to be unable to pursue game because of permanent severe physical disability, if he or she obtains a permit as provided in this subsection. The Commissioner on receipt of satisfactory proof of the disability of an applicant may issue a permit under this subsection. This permit shall be attached to the license, and shall remain in effect until the death of the holder, unless the Commissioner has reason to believe the permit is misused. The holder of the permit shall carry it at all times while hunting, and shall produce it on demand for inspection by any game warden or other law enforcement officer authorized to make arrests. The holder of the permit may take game from a vehicle or boat but only if it is stationary and is not within 10 feet of the traveled portion of a public highway. In no event shall the holder of a permit shoot across the traveled portion of a public highway.

    (f) The phrase "public highway," as used in this section, means roads, including Class 4 roads, shown on the highway maps of the respective towns, made by the Agency of Transportation, but does not include foot trails or private roads. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1967, No. 279 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. March 12, 1968; 1969, No. 35; 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1977, No. 103, § 2, eff. May 6, 1977; 1977, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.); 1991, No. 13, § 4; 1997, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2003, No. 163 (Adj. Sess.), § 15a; 2007, No. 97 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2013, No. 78, § 12a; 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 38; 2013, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 8, eff. May 5, 2014.)

  • § 4706. Snaring animals

    A person shall not take an animal by snaring nor shall he or she possess a snare with intent to use the same. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4707. Traps; notice

    A person who intends to set a trap for any animal on the property of another shall, prior to setting the trap, notify the owner of the property of his or her intention to set the trap and of the prospective location of the trap. The owner of the property may, at any time, refuse to grant permission to set a trap or revoke the permission if previously granted. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 4708. Interference with hunting, fishing, or trapping

    (a) A person shall not intentionally interfere with the lawful taking of fish or wild animals by:

    (1) tampering with traps, nets, bait, firearms, or any other thing used for hunting, trapping, or fishing;

    (2) placing himself or herself in a position, for the purpose of interfering, that hinders or prevents hunting, trapping, or fishing; or

    (3) engaging in an activity, for the purpose of interfering, that drives, harasses, disturbs, or is likely to disturb wildlife or fish.

    (b) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit an incidental interference arising from lawful activity by landowners or users of land, including farmers and recreationists. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1981, No. 85, § 10; 1981, No. 127 (Adj. Sess.); 2015, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 12.)

  • § 4709. Importation, stocking wild animals; possession of wild boar

    (a) A person shall not bring into the State or possess any live wild bird or animal of any kind, unless, upon application in writing therefor, the person obtains from the Commissioner a permit to do so. The importation permit may be granted under such regulations therefor as the Board shall prescribe and only after the Commissioner has made such investigation and inspection of the birds or animals as she or he may deem necessary. The Department may dispose of unlawfully imported wildlife as it may judge best, and the State may collect treble damages from the violator of this subsection for all expenses incurred.

    (b) Nothing in this section shall prohibit the Commissioner or duly authorized agents of the Department of Fish and Wildlife from bringing into the State for the purpose of planting, introducing, or stocking, or from planting, introducing, or stocking in the State, any wild bird or animal.

    (c) Applicants shall pay a permit fee of $100.00.

    (d)(1) The Commissioner shall not issue a permit under this section for the importation or possession of the following live species, a hybrid or genetic variant of the following species, offspring of the following species, or offspring or a hybrid of a genetically engineered variant of the following species: wild boar, wild hog, wild swine, feral pig, feral hog, feral swine, old world swine, razorback, Eurasian wild boar, or Russian wild boar (Sus scrofo Linnaeus).

    (2) This subsection shall not apply to the domestic pig (Sus domesticus) involved in domestic hog production and shall not restrict or limit the authority of the Secretary of Agriculture, Food and Markets to regulate the importation or possession of the domestic pig as livestock or as a domestic animal under Title 6 of the Vermont Statutes Annotated. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1967, No. 46; 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1983, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 13, 1984; 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 25; 1997, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 13; 1997, No. 155 (Adj. Sess.), § 45, eff. Jan. 1, 1999; 2003, No. 163 (Adj. Sess.), § 16; 2013, No. 78, § 15, eff. June 7, 2013.)

  • § 4710. Safety zone; shooting prohibited

    (a) A person may on land owned or occupied by him or her and within 500 feet of any occupied dwelling house, residence, or other building or camp occupied by human beings, or any barn, stable, or other building used in connection therewith, maintain posters furnished by the Department of Fish and Wildlife not less than 12 inches wide and 18 inches high containing the words "safety zone, shooting prohibited." An area bounded by such posters placed at each corner, and not more than 200 feet apart on the boundaries shall be considered enclosed land for the purpose of this section and is hereby defined as a "safety zone." Without advance permission of the owner or occupant, a person shall not discharge a firearm within or take a wild animal that is within a "safety zone" as defined herein.

    (b) Any person who violates a provision of this section shall be fined $50.00. (Added 1967, No. 40,§§ 1, 2, eff. March 16, 1967; amended 1983, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 13, 1984; 1991, No. 13, § 5.)

  • § 4711. Crossbow hunting; permit

    A person who is impaired to the degree that he or she cannot operate a standard bow may obtain a permit to take game with a crossbow. The permit fees shall be $25.00 for a permanent permit and $5.00 for a temporary permit. A person who has lost a crossbow permit may request a new permit from the agent of original issue. The fee shall be $5.00. All fees shall be deposited in the Fish and Wildlife Fund. A person applying for this permit must personally appear before the Commissioner of Fish and Wildlife, or his or her designee, with certification from a licensed physician that he or she is so disabled. The Commissioner may obtain a second medical opinion to verify the disability. Upon satisfactory proof of the disability, the Commissioner may issue a permit under this section. The permit shall set forth whether it was issued because of an inability to use a standard bow, and be attached to the license. The holder of the permit shall carry it at all times while hunting, and produce it on demand for inspection by any game warden or other law enforcement officer authorized to make arrests. Unless it is uncocked, a person shall not possess or transport a crossbow in or on a motor vehicle, motorboat, airplane, snowmobile, or other motor-propelled craft or any vehicle drawn by a motor-propelled vehicle except as permitted under subsection 4705(e) of this title. (Added 1987, No. 159 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1997, No. 155 (Adj. Sess.), § 46, eff. Jan. 1, 1999; 1999, No. 30, § 4, eff. Jan. 1, 2000; 2007, No. 76, § 29, eff. Jan. 1, 2008.)

  • § 4712. Tracking of injured wildlife

    (a) The Commissioner may certify an individual to use a dog on a leash to track injured wild animals. The certificate shall be valid for five years from date of issuance. The Commissioner shall establish the following by rule:

    (1) procedures for issuing a certificate under this section;

    (2) qualifications required for certification under this section;

    (3) privileges granted to a person holding a certificate under this section.

    (b) Fees to be charged to a person applying for certification under this section shall be:

    (1) Application fee                                                        $  25.00

          (2) Initial certification - resident                                     $100.00

          (3) Initial certification - nonresident                                $200.00

          (4) Renewal - resident                                      $125.00          

                (5) Renewal - nonresident                                             $225.00

    (Added 1995, No. 65 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1997, No. 155 (Adj. Sess.), § 47, eff. Jan. 1, 1999.)

     

  • § 4713. Tree stands; ground blinds

    (a) No person shall build, erect, maintain, use, or occupy a permanent or portable tree stand or ground blind for any purpose on any private land in Vermont without landowner permission.

    (b) A person building, erecting, or maintaining a tree stand or ground blind shall permanently mark the stand or blind with the owner's name and address. Marking shall be legible and placed in a manner that enables a person to read it conveniently and easily. This subsection shall not apply to a landowner building, erecting, or maintaining a tree stand or ground blind on his or her own land. (Added 1997, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; amended 1999, No. 30, § 5.)

  • § 4714. Importation and possession of animals for hunting

    (a) A person shall not import or possess any live animal for the purpose of taking by hunting, unless the Commissioner has issued the person an importation and possession permit. The Fish and Wildlife Board shall adopt rules necessary to establish, implement, and enforce the permit and permit process.

    (b) An application for a permit shall be accompanied by a certificate of veterinary inspection certifying that the animal has been inspected, is not showing signs of contagious diseases, and has been inventoried, registered, and tested in accordance with rules of the Secretary of Agriculture, Food and Markets. The Commissioner of Fish and Wildlife may inspect animals being imported under an importation and possession permit and may dispose of unlawfully imported or possessed animals. The State may collect treble damages for expenses incurred in enforcing a violation of this subsection. (Added 1999, No. 30, § 6; amended 2003, No. 42, § 2, eff. May 27, 2003; 2005, No. 12, § 5, eff. May 2, 2005.)

  • § 4715. Remote-control hunting

    (a) As used in this section:

    (1) "Captive animal" includes an animal which has been brought into and kept in captivity for the purpose of taking it, and any increase of such animal.

    (2) "Remote-control hunting" means the use of a computer, any device which uses the Internet, or any other technology to control remotely the aiming and discharge of any device such as a firearm, bow, or spear to take a wild animal or captive animal.

    (b) Except as provided in subsection (e) of this section, no person shall take a wild animal or captive animal using a remote-control hunting device. This subsection shall apply to any person who is in Vermont while using a remote-control hunting device regardless of the location of the animal taken.

    (c) No person shall establish or operate a remote-control hunting site in Vermont.

    (d) No person shall import, export, or possess a wild animal or captive animal, or part thereof, taken by a remote-control hunting device, except that a person operating under a permit pursuant to subsection (e) of this section may possess an animal carcass, or part thereof, taken by that person using a remote-control hunting device.

    (e) A person who is physically disabled to the degree that he or she cannot operate a device allowed for taking of game under Vermont law may obtain a permit to take game in Vermont with a device which is in the immediate vicinity of the permittee and which the permittee operates using remote-control technology other than the Internet. A person applying for this permit shall personally appear before the Commissioner or the Commissioner's designee and submit certification from a licensed physician describing the person's limitations. The Commissioner may obtain a second medical opinion to verify the disability. Upon satisfactory proof of the disability, the Commissioner may issue a permit describing the device and method the person may use to take game. The Commissioner shall require that the permittee be accompanied while hunting by a person who is licensed to hunt in Vermont unless the permittee can demonstrate that he or she is able to track injured game and to retrieve and care for a carcass. If the permit is not intended to be a permanent permit, it shall state the date on which the permit expires. The permit shall be attached to the hunting license, and the holder shall carry it at all times while hunting and produce it on demand for inspection by any fish and wildlife warden or other law enforcement officer. (Added 2005, No. 47, § 1, eff. June 7, 2005; amended 2013, No. 96 (Adj. Sess.), § 39.)


  • Subchapter 002: DEER
  • §§ 4741Repealed. 2013, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. January 1, 2015.

  • § 4742. Repealed. 2009, No. 11, § 1.

  • § 4742a. Youth deer hunting weekend

    (a) The Saturday and Sunday prior to opening day of the regular deer season established by Board rule shall be youth deer hunting weekend.

    (b) A person who is 15 years of age or under on the weekend of the hunt, who has successfully completed a hunter safety course, may take one wild deer during youth deer hunting weekend in accordance with the rules of the Board. In order to hunt under this section, a young person shall also hold a valid hunting license under section 4255 of this title, hold a youth deer hunting tag, and be accompanied by an unarmed adult who holds a valid Vermont hunting license and who is over 18 years of age. An adult accompanying a youth under this section shall accompany no more than two young people at one time.

    (c) Each year, the Board shall determine whether antlerless deer may be taken under this section in any deer management unit or units. A determination under this subsection shall be made by rule, shall be based on the game management study conducted pursuant to section 4081 of this title, and, notwithstanding subsection (g) of that section, may allow taking of antlerless deer.

    (d) No person shall hunt under this section on privately owned land without first obtaining the permission of the owner or occupant.

    (e) Before the first youth deer hunting weekend and after each fall hunting season, the Department shall collect information on youth deer hunting weekend during the regional public hearings held pursuant to subsection 4081(f) of this title. Information relative to the public's knowledge and concerns about the deer herd shall be gathered. The Board shall administer youth deer hunting weekend, by deer management unit, based on public input and scientific information.

    (f) The scheduled amount of a fine under section 4555 of this title shall be doubled for a violation of this section, and the fine shall be assessed against the licensed adult who is accompanying the youth pursuant to subsection (b) of this section and who has the youth hunter in his or her charge.

    (g) As used in this section, "accompany," "accompanied," or "accompanying" means direct control and supervision, including the ability to see and communicate with the youth hunter without the aid of artificial devices such as radios or binoculars, except for medically necessary devices such as hearing aids or eyeglasses. While hunting, an individual who holds a valid hunting license under subsection 4254(b) of this title shall accompany no more than two youth hunters at a time. (Added 2001, No. 4, § 1, eff. April 4, 2001; amended 2009, No. 11, § 2; 2009, No. 122 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2013, No. 116 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. Jan. 1, 2015.)

  • §§ 4743, 4744. Repealed. 2011, No. 54, § 3.

  • § 4745. Taking big game out of season prohibited; time

    A person shall not take big game except during the seasons provided by law under part 4 of this title or the rules of the Board, and then only between one-half hour before sunrise and one-half hour after sunset. However, this section shall not be construed to prohibit the taking of big game under section 4826 or 4827 of this title and provisions in the rules of the Board relating to wildlife doing damage. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1961, No. 161, § 4, eff. June 8, 1961; 1967, No. 4, eff. Feb. 17, 1967; 1967, No. 315 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 2015, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 13.)

  • § 4746. Repealed. 1989, No. 190 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.

  • § 4747. Big game taken by illegal means

    A person shall not take or possess big game by the aid of a snare, trap, salt lick, jack, or other light or use these devices to entrap or ensnare big game. A person shall not use a dog of any breed or sex at any time for the purpose of hunting any big game except black bear and wild turkey as provided in fish and wildlife rules, nor shall he or she harbor or have in his or her possession a dog for this purpose. A person other than the owner or a person designated by the owner shall not take a confined fallow deer or a confined red deer. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1983, No. 234 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; 1985, No. 92, § 6; 1993, No. 236 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 4748. Dogs pursuing deer or moose

    (a) A dog that has been found to hunt or pursue deer or moose and whose owner or keeper has had notice to that effect shall not run at large unaccompanied by the owner or keeper.

    (b) A State game warden, deputy warden, sheriff, deputy sheriff, constable, police officer, or State Police may kill by shooting with firearms, dogs, whether licensed or unlicensed, when in such close pursuit as to endanger the life of a deer or moose or found in the act of wounding, maiming, or killing deer or moose. Provisions of this section shall be subject to limitations set forth in section 4710 of this title. A warden or other person authorized under this subsection who does not kill a dog under the provisions of this subsection shall, if possible, locate the owner or keeper of the dog and shall issue a warning that the dog was in violation of this section and each future violation shall result in the owner or keeper being fined not more than $200.00 nor less than $50.00.

    (c) When a licensed dog is killed pursuant to subsection (b) of this section, the game warden, deputy game warden, sheriff, deputy sheriff, constable, police officer, or State Police shall forthwith report the same to the owner of said licensed dog.

    (d) No person shall have a cause of action against any of the designated wardens, sheriff, deputy sheriff, constable, police officer, or State Police exercising the authority herein granted. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1969, No. 163 (Adj. Sess.), eff. Feb. 4, 1970; 1977, No. 132 (Adj. Sess.); 1979, No. 163 (Adj. Sess.); 1981, No. 63; 1995, No. 1, § 1.)

  • § 4749. Injured deer, killing

    (a) Any game warden, deputy game warden, sheriff, deputy sheriff, constable, police officer, State Police or selectboard member may kill a deer which has been so injured that its chance for recovery is remote.

    (b) The official by whom such a deer is killed shall forthwith report the same to the Commissioner or a game warden and such deer shall be disposed of as provided in section 4513 of this title. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4750. Repealed. 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 9.

  • § 4751. Swimming deer

    A person shall not take a deer which is swimming in any lake, pond, river, or other body of water. (Added 1973, No. 178 (Adj. Sess.), § 8.)

  • § 4752. Repealed. 1983, No. 118 (Adj. Sess.).

  • § 4753. Repealed. 2011, No. 54, § 3.


  • Subchapter 003: POSSESSION, TRANSPORTATION, AND SALE OF BIG GAME
  • § 4781. Big game; possession

    A person shall not possess big game taken by unlawful means or methods or taken in a closed season in violation of any provision of part 4 of this title or rules of the Board. Unless otherwise prohibited, a person may possess lawfully taken game during the open season and for a reasonable time thereafter. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1985, No. 92, § 7; 2015, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 14.)

  • § 4782. Possession in cold storage of big game

    Any part of the carcass of big game legally taken may be possessed at any time in cans or in a cold storage locker or home freezer. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1985, No. 92, § 8.)

  • § 4783. Purchase and sale of big game

    (a) A person shall not buy or sell big game or the meat of big game within the State except during the open season and for 20 days thereafter.

    (b) Notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, a person may buy or sell at any time:

    (1) the head, hide, and hoofs of deer or moose legally taken; or

    (2) the head, hide, paws, and internal organs of a black bear, legally taken.

    (c) Neither anadromous Atlantic salmon taken in the Connecticut River Basin nor wild turkey shall be bought or sold at any time. The meat of big game animals shall not be bought or sold for the purpose of being transported out of the State. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1985, No. 92, § 9.)

  • § 4784. Transportation of big game

    A person shall not transport big game taken by unlawful means or methods or taken in a closed season in violation of any provision of part 4 of this title or rules of the Board. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1985, No. 92, § 10; 2015, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 15.)

  • § 4785. Repealed. 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 1(9).

  • § 4786. Game suppers

    (a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, game suppers may be held at any time by a church, volunteer fire department, rod and game club, or other nonprofit organization under permit issued by a fish and wildlife warden, the Commissioner, or a designee of the Commissioner.

    (b) Wild animals and fish legally taken in this State, or another state or country, may be transported and sold as part of a game supper authorized by permit. Big game provided by the Department may also be sold at such suppers. Migratory waterfowl and anadromous salmon shall not be sold.

    (c) The permit for a game supper required by this section shall state the name of the organization holding the supper, and the date and place of the supper. The permit shall be applied for no later than 10 days before the date of the supper. (Added 1989, No. 57.)


  • Subchapter 004: WILD ANIMALS DOING DAMAGE
  • §§ 4821-4825. Repealed. 1969, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.

  • § 4826. Taking deer damaging crops

    (a) A person, including an authorized member of the person's family, an authorized regular on-premises employee, or an agent who holds a Vermont hunting license and who is designated by the person, may take, on land owned or occupied by the person, up to four deer per year which the person can prove were doing damage to the following:

    (1) a tree which is being grown in a plantation or being cultivated for the purpose of harvesting an annual or perennial crop or producing any marketable item; or

    (2) a crop-bearing plant; or

    (3) a crop, except grass.

    (b) A person by whom, or under whose direction, a deer is wounded or killed, shall report in writing signed by him or her within 12 hours all the facts relative to the act to a game warden. The report shall state the time and place of the wounding or killing.

    (c) A person who kills a deer shall immediately properly dress the carcass and care for the meat.

    (d) The game warden shall immediately investigate the case and if satisfied that the deer was taken as provided in this section, shall give the person a certificate of the finding in the matter. The certificate shall entitle the person to the ownership of the carcass, but the person shall not sell or give away the same. However, the head and the antlers, if any, shall be turned over to a warden. In addition, any carcass not needed for home consumption in the household of the certificate-holder shall be turned over to a game warden.

    (e) When a game warden finds that a deer has been wounded or killed contrary to the provisions of this section, he or she shall dispose of the deer under the direction of the Commissioner, and any monies received therefor shall be paid to the Commissioner.

    (f)(1) "Person" includes all people who jointly own or lease the land.

    (2) "Post" means any signage that would lead a reasonable person to believe that hunting is prohibited on the land, except for signs erected pursuant to section 4710 of this title.

    (g) The Commissioner may issue a permit to a person to take more than four deer under this section if:

    (1) the land owned by the person is not posted against hunting;

    (2) the person can prove that the property is sustaining additional and ongoing damage; and

    (3) the person has taken reasonable measures to prevent the deer from continuing to damage the crop.

    (h) The Commissioner is authorized to issue an order requiring any person to remove food or bait which has the effect of luring deer into the vicinity of the property sustaining damage. In this subsection, food does not include a crop or crop-bearing plant. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1967, No. 57, § 2, eff. March 30, 1967; 1973, No. 242 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 8, 1974; 2005, No. 24, § 1; 2011, No. 54, § 11, eff. May 31, 2011.)

  • § 4827. Black bear doing damage

    (a)(1) Except as provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection and in subsection 4827a(b) of this title, a person, an authorized member of the person's family, or the person's authorized regular on-premise employee may, after attempting reasonable nonlethal measures to protect his or her property, take on land owned or occupied by the person a bear which he or she can prove was doing damage to the following:

    (A) livestock, a pet, or another domestic animal;

    (B) bees or bee hives;

    (C) a vehicle, building, shed, or any dwelling; or

    (D) a crop or crop-bearing plant other than grass.

    (2)(A) The requirements of subdivision (1) of this subsection shall not apply in exigent circumstances. As used in this subdivision, "exigent circumstances" means the need for immediate protection of a person, livestock, pet, domestic animal, or occupied dwelling.

    (B) Landowners or lessees subject to bear damage in unharvested cornfields shall be exempt from having to first use nonlethal control measures prior to taking a black bear doing damage under subdivision (a)(1) of this section.

    (b) A person authorized to take a bear under subsection (a) of this section may designate one individual who holds a resident Vermont hunting license as an agent to take a bear doing damage on his or her behalf. The person may not offer or accept any form of payment to or from the agent under this subsection except as allowed in subsection (e) of this section.

    (c) A person who wounds or kills a bear pursuant to this section shall immediately report the wounding or killing to a game warden. Within 12 hours of the wounding or killing, the person who performed the act shall submit a written, signed report relating the date, time, place, and reason for the wounding or killing to a game warden.

    (d) A person who kills a bear under this section shall immediately properly dress the carcass and care for the meat.

    (e) The game warden shall immediately investigate the case and if satisfied that the bear was taken as provided in this section, the warden shall give the person who owns or occupies the land a certificate of his or her finding in the matter. The certificate shall entitle the person who owns or occupies the land to the ownership of the carcass. However, the person may not sell or give away the carcass except to offer all or a portion of it to an agent designated under subsection (b) of this section as compensation for killing the bear. Any carcass not desired for home consumption in the household of the certificate holder or designated agent shall be turned over to a game warden.

    (f) [Repealed.]

    (g) The Commissioner is authorized to issue an order requiring a person to contain food which has the effect of luring a bear onto property owned or occupied by the person. In this subsection, food does not include a crop, a crop bearing plant, or livestock. The order shall include specific measures which would constitute containing the food and the date by which the food shall be contained. Containing food means to prevent a bear from having access to the food. Following issuance of an order under this subsection, a person who fails to contain the food may not shoot a bear causing damage pursuant to this section. However, if the person contains the food and a bear continues to do damage pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, 30 days or more after containment, the person may take the bear pursuant to this section.

    (h) A person who shoots a bear in violation of subsection (g) of this section or subsection 4827a(b) of this title may be fined up to $2,000.00. A person who does not remove bait or contain food following an order issued under subsection (g) of this section or subsection 4827a(b) may be fined up to $1,000.00. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 2003, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 27, 2004; 2013, No. 78, § 16.)

  • § 4827a. Feeding bear; prohibition

    (a) A person shall not knowingly feed a bear and shall not knowingly give, place, expose, deposit, distribute, or scatter any bait, food, or other edible material in a manner intended to lure a bear to feed except:

    (1) under a license or permit issued under section 4152 of this title by the Commissioner for bona fide scientific research, mitigation of wildlife damage, nuisance problems, or wildlife population reduction program;

    (2) by planting, cultivating, or harvesting of crops directly associated with bona fide agricultural practices, including planted wildlife food plots; or

    (3) by distribution of feed material for livestock directly associated with bona fide agricultural practices.

    (b) A person who has intentionally placed bait, food, or other edible material, including placing food within a bird feeder, to lure wildlife, as that term is defined to include birds and other animals under subdivision 4001(15) of this title, onto the property within the past 30 days shall be prohibited from taking a bear doing damage under the authority set forth in section 4827 of this title. The Commissioner or his or her designee may issue an order requiring a person to remove or contain the bait, food, or edible material if the placing of bait or food results in the feeding of a bear.

    (c) As used in this section, "bait, food, or other edible material" means fruit, grain, salt, grease, garbage, or other materials intended to feed or lure wildlife. (Added 2013, No. 78, § 17.)

  • § 4828. Taking of rabbit or fur-bearing animals by landowner; selectboard; certificate; penalty

    (a) The provisions of law or regulations of the Board relating to the taking of rabbits or fur-bearing animals shall not apply to an owner, the owner's employee, tenant, or caretaker of property protecting the property from damage by rabbits or fur-bearing animals, or to the selectboard of a town protecting public highways or bridges from such damage or submersion with the permission of the owner of lands affected. However, if required by rule of the board, an owner, employee, tenant, or caretaker, or the members of the selectboard, who desire to possess during the closed season the skins of any fur-bearing animals taken in defense of property, highways, or bridges shall notify the Commissioner or the Commissioner's representative within 84 hours after taking such animal, and shall hold such pelts for inspection by such authorized representatives.

    (b) Before disposing of such pelts, if required by rule of the Board, the property owner, employee, tenant, caretaker, or selectboard shall secure from the Commissioner or a designee a certificate describing the pelts, and showing that the pelts were legally taken during a closed season and in defense of property, highways, or bridges. In the event of storage, sale, or transfer, such certificates shall accompany the pelts described therein. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1983, No. 213 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 1995, No. 93 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. March 28, 1996.)

  • § 4829. Person suffering damage by deer or black bear

    (a) A person engaged in the business of farming who suffers damage by deer to the person's crops, fruit trees, or crop-bearing plants on land not posted against the hunting of deer, or a person engaged in the business of farming who suffers damage by black bear to the person's cattle, sheep, swine, poultry, or bees or bee hives on land not posted against hunting or trapping of black bear is entitled to reimbursement for the damage, and may apply to the Department of Fish and Wildlife within 72 hours of the occurrence of the damage for reimbursement for the damage. As used in this section, "post" means any signage that would lead a reasonable person to believe that hunting is prohibited on the land.

    (b) As used in this section, a person is "engaged in the business of farming" if he or she earns at least one-half of the farmer's annual gross income from the business of farming, as that term is defined in the Internal Revenue Code, 26 C.F.R. § 1.175-3. (Added 1969, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1983, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 13, 1984; 1997, No. 99 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; 2011, No. 54, § 12, eff. May 31, 2011; 2013, No. 78, § 18.)

  • § 4830. Regulations

    The State Fish and Wildlife Board shall adopt rules and regulations relating to application for reimbursement, examination by State fish and wildlife wardens of damage and reimbursement therefor. (Added 1969, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1983, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 13, 1984.)

  • § 4831. Reimbursement

    Reimbursement under this subchapter shall be made by the State Treasurer, on the voucher of the Commissioner of Fish and Wildlife, from money received by the State Treasurer under the provisions of this part. (Added 1969, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 4832. Appeal

    A person who is denied reimbursement under this subchapter or who is dissatisfied with the amount of the reimbursement granted may appeal to the Superior Court of the county in which he or she resides. (Added 1969, No. 195 (Adj. Sess.), § 4; amended 1971, No. 185 (Adj. Sess.), § 25, eff. March 29, 1972; 1973, No. 193 (Adj. Sess.), § 3, eff. April 9, 1974.)

  • § 4833. Coyote Control Program

    The Commissioner shall develop a Coyote Control Program for implementation in those areas of the State where he or she has determined that predation by coyotes is posing a threat to domesticated animals, deer, and other wildlife. In no event shall the Program use poison. (Added 1985, No. 132 (Adj. Sess.).)


  • Subchapter 005: FUR-BEARING ANIMALS
  • § 4861. Fur-bearing animals, taking, possession

    Fur-bearing animals shall not be taken except in accordance with the provisions of this part, and of rules of the Board. The fur or skins of fur-bearing animals may be possessed at any time unless otherwise provided by this part, rules of the Board, or orders of the Commissioner. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 26.)

  • § 4862. Repealed. 1979, No. 66, § 2(12).

  • § 4863. Trapping tags; fees

    The Commissioner may fix a fee not to exceed $1.00 which shall be paid by the trapper to the game warden for each skin required to be tagged and marked by regulations of the Board and such fees shall be transmitted to the Commissioner who shall pay the same into the State Treasury. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4864. Transporting beaver skins; confiscation

    Any beaver skins that may come into this State in the raw state from any other state or country shall have the official stamp, tag, or seal of the state or country in which such skins were taken. All beaver skins not tagged and marked as provided shall be seized and confiscated in the name of the State. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4865. Repealed. 2009, No. 122 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.


  • Subchapter 006: BIRDS
  • § 4901. Repealed. 1979, No. 66, § 2(13).

  • § 4902. Wild birds generally; no open season; exception

    Wild birds, other than pigeons, shall not be taken, possessed, bought, or sold, at any time, except as provided by this part, rules of the Board or orders of the Commissioner. Birds coming from without the State belonging to the same family as those protected by this subchapter shall not be bought or sold. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1963, No. 112, § 1; 1967, No. 22, § 1; 1981, No. 85, § 11, eff. May 7, 1981; amended 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 27.)

  • § 4903. Repealed. 1991, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 1(10).

  • § 4904. Use of light, snares, traps

    A person shall not take a bird with the aid of a jack or other light. A person shall not take a wild bird by trapping, netting, or snaring, or possess such a bird so taken, or set, place, or use, where birds may be taken, a net, trap, or snare for taking birds. Such a net, trap, or snare is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and may be summarily abated and destroyed by any person, and game wardens shall seize and destroy such devices. The Commissioner, however, may authorize the taking of birds by nets or traps or other devices under such regulations as he or she may prescribe. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961.)

  • § 4905. Birds' nests and eggs; destroying or robbing

    A person shall not take or wilfully destroy the nests or eggs of wild birds, other than pigeons, the English sparrow, starling, or purple grackle, except when necessary to protect buildings or when taken as provided in section 4152 of this title. (Added 1961, No. 119, § 1, eff. May 9, 1961; amended 1963, No. 112, § 2; 1967, No. 22, § 2; 1981, No. 85, § 12, eff. May 7, 1981.)

  • § 4906. Repealed. 1975, No. 39, § 4.

  • § 4907. Waterfowl blinds

    (a) A person shall not place a waterfowl blind or cause the same to be placed on or in the waters of the State earlier than the first Saturday of September of any year, and then only if the person's name and address are permanently and legibly affixed thereto, by waterproof paint or rustproof tag. A person shall remove his or her waterfowl blind, together with its contents and any surrounding debris, located on or in any waters of the State except Lake Champlain on or before May 15 of the following year. A waterfowl blind located on or in Lake Champlain shall be removed on or before February 15 of the following year.

    (b) For the purposes of this section, "waterfowl blind" means any manufactured place of concealment or any boat, raft, or similar structure which has been designed to partially or completely conceal a person taking ducks or geese.

    (c) Subsection (a) of this section shall not apply to State-owned and -operated blinds on lands owned or controlled by the State. (Added 1971, No. 223 (Adj. Sess.); amended 1987, No. 133 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 4, 1988.)

  • § 4908. Youth turkey hunting weekend

    (a) The Saturday and Sunday prior to opening day of spring turkey season shall be youth turkey hunting weekend.

    (b) A person who is age 15 or under on the weekend of the hunt, who has successfully completed a hunter safety course, may take one wild turkey during youth turkey hunting weekend in accordance with the rules of the Board. In order to hunt under this section, a young person shall also hold valid hunting and turkey licenses under section 4255 of this title, hold a youth turkey hunting tag, and be accompanied by an unarmed adult who holds a valid Vermont hunting license and is over 18 years of age. An adult accompanying a youth under this section shall accompany no more than two young people at one time.

    (c) No person shall hunt under this section on privately owned land without first obtaining the permission of the owner or occupant.

    (d) The scheduled amount of a fine under section 4555 of this title shall be doubled for a violation of this section, and the fine shall be assessed against the licensed adult who is accompanying the youth pursuant to subsection (b) of this section and who has the youth hunter in his or her charge.

    (e) For the purposes of this section, "accompany," "accompanied," or "accompanying" means direct control and supervision, including the ability to see and communicate with the youth hunter without the aid of artificial devices such as radios or binoculars, except for medically necessary devices such as hearing aids or eyeglasses. While hunting, an individual who holds a valid hunting license under subsection 4254(b) of this title shall accompany no more than two youth hunters at a time. (Added 2001, No. 4, § 2, eff. April 4, 2001; amended 2009, No. 11, § 3, eff. May 7, 2009; 2009, No. 122 (Adj. Sess.), § 2.)

  • § 4909. Connecticut river zone

    A person holding a New Hampshire hunting license which allows taking of migratory waterfowl may take migratory waterfowl and coots from the Connecticut River zone, as defined by the Board, provided the State of New Hampshire grants the same right to a person holding a Vermont hunting license which allows taking of migratory waterfowl in the Connecticut River. (Added 2001, No. 79 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. April 10, 2002.)