Sunday, November 30, 2008

Monday Morning: Pa Deer Season


Dawn, normally a quiet time of day in rural Pennsylvania, will be anything but quiet tomorrow. Well before the first light of day people all over the state will be rising from their warm beds and preparing to spend the day in the cold wet woods.

The Monday after Thanksgiving has been the traditional season opener of the Pennsylvania’s buck season for more years than I have been alive. With time comes change and it is now the opening day of rifle season. We have more seasons in which to hunt deer than you can shake a stick at; two archery seasons, muzzleloader season, flintlock season and rifle season not to count the deer damage seasons that run independent of the regular seasons.
Depending upon which part of Pa one is hunting in, for a buck to be legal for most hunters, it must have either 3 or 4 points on one antler. Most areas are open for the harvest of does, but not all. Since Pennsylvania is a state that does not discriminate, if the hunter is currently active duty military or is less than seventeen years old then a legal buck is defined as a deer having one antler 3” or longer. If the aspiring deer hunter is less than twelve years old a hunting license is not required. Believe it or not, if a baby is accompanied by a controlling adult, that baby is allowed to legally kill a buck in the upcoming season. That’s right; there is no minimum age requirement for one to hunt deer in Pennsylvania.

Are you confused? I doubt that Pennsylvania has cornered the market on confusing regulations, but our legislature and the commission bureaucracy has certainly done a great job of making a mess out of something that once was simple and straightforward. I have not even touched upon the regulations governing the wearing of safety clothing, that in and of itself would make quite a few post.

In only a few hours hundreds of thousands of people will brave the weather and the morass of regulations to pursue the Pennsylvania whitetail deer. This season opener will effectively close the book on my Pennsylvania buck photography for 2008.

13 comments:

Your EG Tour Guide said...

Deer hunting season sounds very confusing indeed. I hope all your favourite deer make it through!

Willard said...

A great post and extremely accurate!

photowannabe said...

Such complications but what a stunning picture . I think this is an absolute favorite.

Shellmo said...

Very complicated over in your neck of the woods! But I do love your photo today!

Meggie said...

Amen! Well said, Salty! I saw a beautiful 8 pt. out my kitchen window on Thanksgiving. I sure hope he stays close by on posted land. To further add to the confusion of all the hunting rules and regs, what irks me also is all the drinking that goes on during the socializing. Alcohol and guns do NOT mix!!

AphotoAday said...

I could tell you what I think of hunters, but Blogger does not approve of obscene language...

I have deer walking through my yard at all hours of the day, 365 days a year... They often bed down on the hillside below me... I'd starve to death before I would ever shoot one for food...

Kerri said...

Peek a Boo was my first thought when seeing this shot! I LOVE it!!

fishing guy said...

Salty: A beautiful capture of the doe. I do like the peek around the tree.

Leedra said...

In Tennessee if you were born in 1970 or after you HAVE to go through gun safety program before you are allowed to hunt. Period. So the young ones have to go through the program before allowed to kill anything. There are juvenile hunt dates (no adults can kill that day) but they still have to have been through the program. I think it is great.

The Whispering Poppies said...

Well I hope the bucks you've been featuring here keep a safe distance, because they're all quite beautiful. =)

Kahshe Cottager said...

I loved the photo of the peek-a-boo deer but was a little dismayed at the hunting regulations. I cringed every time I heard shots here in hunting season.

Ivar Ivrig said...

A cool shot. Just like a kid peeking around a corner :-)

Moonsmom said...

A GREAT picture!!!!

I hope every hunter caught a cold.