The Vermont Statutes Online
The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.
NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.
Subchapter 001 : General Provisions(Cite as: 10 App. V.S.A. § 20)
§ 20. Aerial Hunting
This rule is adopted pursuant to 10 V.S.A. § 4081(a). In adopting this rule, the Fish and Wildlife Board is following the policy established by the general assembly that the protection, propagation, control, management, and conservation of fish, wildlife and furbearing animals in this state is in the interest of the public welfare and that the safeguarding of this valuable resource for the people of the State requires a constant and continual vigilance. In accordance with 10 V.S.A § 4084(a)(4), the Fish and Wildlife Board has the authority to prescribe the manner and means of taking any species or variety, and including reporting and tagging of game.
The purpose of this rule is to restrict the taking of wild animals by use of aircraft and drones.
3.0 Definitions3.1 “Aircraft” means a contrivance used for navigation of or flight in the air and specifically includes, but is not limited to, planes, helicopters, hang-gliders, hot air balloons and any other device that allows a person to fly or hover above the ground.
3.2 “Take or taking” as defined in 10 V.S.A. § 4001: pursuing, shooting, hunting, killing, capturing, trapping, snaring and netting fish, birds and quadrupeds and all lesser acts, such as disturbing, harrying or worrying or wounding or placing, setting, drawing or using any net or other device commonly used to take fish or wild animals, whether they result in the taking or not; and shall include every attempt to take and every act of assistance to every other person in taking or attempting to take fish or wild animals, provided that when taking is allowed by law, reference is had to taking by lawful means and in lawful manner.
3.3 “Unmanned aerial vehicle” means any device capable of flying in the air which is remotely, automatically or otherwise piloted without an occupant, including but not limited to drones.
3.4 “Wild animal” as defined in 10 V.S.A. § 4001: all animals, including birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles, other than domestic animals.
4.0 Aerial Hunting and Taking Prohibitions; Generally.
4.1 It shall be unlawful for any person to take or attempt to take wild animals while a person is in an aircraft.
4.2 It shall be unlawful for any person to take or attempt to take wild animals by use of an UAV.
4.3 It shall be unlawful for any person within an aircraft, or with the use of a drone or UAV, to:
(a) attempt to locate, surveil, or aid or assist in attempting to locate or surveil any wild animal, for the purpose of taking or attempting to take the wild animal; or
(b) drive or harass any wild animal, or otherwise aid or assist in taking or attempting to take a wild animal.
5.0 Authorized Exceptions.
Nothing in this rule shall be construed to relieve or modify the requirement to comply with applicable state and federal regulations, regarding aircraft and UAVs or, to apply to qualified personnel carrying out their lawful duties, in compliance with applicable state and federal regulations and permits, regarding aircraft and “UAVs”. (Added 2015, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg., eff. Mar. 14, 2015.)