Manitoba cracking down on illegal night hunting and hunting in moose closure areas
November 15, 2020, 3:28 pm
Manitoba Conservation and Climate says conservation officers are continuing enforcement against illegal night hunting and illegal hunting in moose conservation closure areas.
On Saturday, Nov. 14, conservation officers encountered more individuals hunting in an unsafe manner, on private land without permission and from a roadway.
Just after 8:30 a.m., officers saw a truck drive off a road and quickly accelerate into a field near Deloraine. They pursued it and saw the driver chasing a buck and doe deer through the field. Officers intercepted the vehicle on a nearby municipal road and the two men admitted they did not have permission to hunt on the property. One man from Lake Metigoshe and one man from Deloraine were charged with hunting on private land without permission and were issued warnings for hunting from a vehicle. A rifle and a shotgun were seized as part of the investigation.
Later that day, officers in eastern Manitoba conducting a decoy operation apprehended two brothers in the Rural Municipality of Reynolds near Hadashville. Officers saw two men in a truck shoot at the decoys from a road almost an hour after sunset. Although the investigation is ongoing, a number of charges are being contemplated including discharging a firearm from a vehicle and hunting at a prohibited time of day. A shotgun and a flashlight were seized. Three other men in the vehicle were not hunting and do not face charges at this time.
Since Oct. 10, conservation officers have conducted patrols to enforce Manitoba’s new Wildlife Amendment Act (Safe Hunting and Shared Management), resulting in:
• charges or appearance notices to 26 individuals for serious wildlife offences,
• warnings to 19 individuals for night hunting without a permit or for hunting in a moose conservation closure,
• charges to four individuals for possessing illegally taken wildlife,
• seizures of six vehicles,
• seizures of 12 firearms, and
• restitution orders totalling $14,000.
On Oct. 10, the Wildlife Amendment Act (Safe Hunting and Shared Management) took effect with the goal of ensuring a safe hunting environment. Night hunting is now illegal in Manitoba on all private land. The act also allows the establishment of shared management committees, which can be an important tool for improved wildlife conservation including for moose.
The province has implemented a permit system to allow opportunities for rights-based hunting on some Crown land, with different requirements for northern and southern Manitoba based on extensive Crown-Indigenous consultations that contributed to the development of the legislation.
In northern Manitoba, Indigenous hunters may hunt at night on Crown land and do not need to apply for a permit, though it is subject to a three-kilometre safety buffer around occupied sites and provincial roadways.
In southern Manitoba, night hunting is prohibited except with a permit that allows rights-based hunting on Crown land, subject to terms and conditions establishing where it can be done safely.
Anyone with information on illegal activities is asked to call their local Manitoba Conservation and Climate office or the Turn In Poachers (TIP) line at 1-800-782-0076.