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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 03-2070


[58 PA. CODE CH. 141]

Hunting and Trapping; Coyote

[33 Pa.B. 5316]

   To effectively manage the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth, the Game Commission (Commission), at its June 24, 2003, meeting, adopted the following amendment:

   Amend § 141.4 (relating to hunting hours) to permit the taking of coyotes at any hour, day or night, even during the legal hunting hours of the spring gobbler season.

   The final-form rulemaking will have no adverse impact on the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth.

   The authority for the final-form rulemaking is 34 Pa.C.S. (relating to Game and Wildlife Code) (code).

   Notice of proposed rulemaking was published at 33 Pa.B. 2881 (June 21, 2003).

1.  Introduction

   The Commission amended § 141.4(2) to permit the taking of coyotes at any hour, day or night, even during the legal hunting hours of the spring gobbler season.

2.  Purpose and Authority

   Section 139.4 (relating to seasons and bag limits for the license year) presently contains language permitting the taking of coyotes during the spring gobbler turkey season by persons who have a valid spring turkey tag and meet fluorescent and shot size requirements. However, § 141.4 concurrently contains language forbidding the hunting of coyotes during the legal hunting hours of the spring gobbler season (1/2 hour before sunrise to 12 p.m.). To make the regulations more consistent, the Commission amended § 141.4 to permit the taking of coyotes during legal hunting hours of the spring gobbler season.

   Section 2102(b)(1) of the code (relating to regulations) authorizes the Commission to ''promulgate regulations relating to seasons and bag limits for hunting or furtaking, the possession of certain species or parts thereof, the number and types of devices and equipment allowed, the identification of devices and the use and possession of devices.'' Section 2102(a) of the code provides that ''The commission shall promulgate such regulations as it deems necessary and appropriate concerning game or wildlife and hunting or furtaking in this Commonwealth, including regulations relating to the protection, preservation and management of game or wildlife and game or wildlife habitat, permitting or prohibiting hunting or furtaking, the ways, manner, methods and means of hunting or furtaking, and the health and safety of persons who hunt or take wildlife or may be in the vicinity of persons who hunt or take game or wildlife in this Commonwealth.'' These provisions provide the statutory authority for the final-form rulemaking.

3.  Regulatory Requirements

   The final-form rulemaking permits hunters to harvest a coyote during the legal hunting hours of the spring gobbler season.

4.  Persons Affected

   Persons wishing to take a coyote during the spring gobbler season will be affected by this final-form rulemaking.

5.  Comment and Response Summary

   There were no official comments received regarding this final-form rulemaking.

6.  Cost and Paperwork Requirements

   The final-form rulemaking should not result in additional cost or paperwork.

7.  Effective Date

   The final-form rulemaking will be effective on publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and will remain in effect until changed by the Commission.

8.  Contact Person

   For further information regarding the final-form rulemaking, contact Michael A. Dubaich, Director, Bureau of Law Enforcement, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797, (717) 783-6526.


   The Commission finds that:

   (1)  Public notice of intention to adopt the administrative amendment adopted by this order has been given under sections 201 and 202 of the act of July 31, 1968 (P. L. 769, No. 240) (45 P. S. §§ 1201 and 1202) and the regulations thereunder, 1 Pa. Code §§ 7.1 and 7.2.

   (2)  The adoption of the amendment of the Commission in the manner provided in this order is necessary and appropriate for the administration and enforcement of the authorizing statute.


   The Commission, acting under authorizing statute, orders that:

   (a)  The regulations of the Commission, 58 Pa. Code Chapter 141, are amended by amending § 141.4 to read as set forth in Annex A.

   (b)  The Executive Director of the Commission shall certify this order and Annex A and deposit them with the Legislative Reference Bureau as required by law.

   (c)  This order shall become effective upon final-form publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.

Executive Director

   Fiscal Note: Fiscal Note 48-168 remains valid for the final adoption of the subject regulation.

Annex A




Subchapter A.  GENERAL

§ 141.4.  Hunting hours.

   During open hunting seasons, wild birds and animals may be taken 1/2 hour before sunrise to sunset unless further restricted.

   (1)  During the regular antlered and antlerless deer seasons, it is unlawful to take or attempt to take other wild birds or mammals from 1/2 hour before sunrise to sunset. Game birds on regulated hunting grounds and migratory waterfowl are excepted. Coyotes may be taken from the first day to the last day inclusive of any deer or bear season only by persons who possess a valid furtaker's license and wear 250 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange-colored material on the head, chest and back combined visible in a 360° arc from 2 hours before sunrise to 2 hours after sunset or by persons lawfully engaged in hunting deer or bear who have a valid tag.

   (2)  Raccoon, fox, skunk, opossum, coyote, bobcat and weasel may be taken any hour, day or night, except during restricted periods in paragraph (1), and woodchuck, opossum, skunk and weasel may not be hunted prior to 12 noon during the spring gobbler season.

   (3)  Turkey hunting hours are 1/2 hour before sunrise to 12 noon during the spring gobbler season.

   (4)  Mourning doves may be hunted from 12 noon to sunset from the first season opening date through the first season closing date.

[Pa.B. Doc. No. 03-2070. Filed for public inspection October 24, 2003, 9:00 a.m.]

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