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Part 1 - Single Species and Part 2 - More Than One Species - Express Terms (Hunting with Crossbows) Adopted August 27, 2014

Express Terms

Amend 6 NYCRR, Part 1, entitled "Single Species," as follows:

Amend subdivision 6 NYCRR 1.11 (d) as follows:

(d) Other requirements.

(1) During the regular season in Westchester and Suffolk Counties, white-tailed deer may only be taken by longbow.

(2) During all seasons in Wildlife Management Units 4J and 8C, white-tailed deer may only be taken by longbow.

(3) During the youth firearms season, junior bowhunters, hunting pursuant to a junior bowhunting license, may only take deer by longbow. Junior hunters, hunting pursuant to a junior hunting license, may take deer with a firearm [or crossbow].

(4) During the youth firearms season, junior hunters may take only one deer, of either sex, by use of a firearm.

(5) Any youth participating in the youth firearms season shall be accompanied by an adult as required by Environmental Conservation Law §11-0929. An adult who is accompanying a junior hunter during the youth firearms season, may not possess a firearm, longbow or crossbow and shall not be actively engaged in any other hunting.

[(5)] (6) It is unlawful for any person to hunt or take a deer during the muzzleloading deer season except with a muzzleloading firearm capable of being loaded with only one charge or a crossbow .

[(6)] (7) During the Northern Zone muzzleloading season, the types of deer that may be legally harvested, the open Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) as described in section 4.1 of this Part are as set forth below.

Open WMUs for harvest of deer of either sex Open WMUs for harvest only of antlerless deer or deer having both antlers less than three inches in length Open WMUs for harvest of antlered deer only
Early Muzzleloader 5A, 5C, 5F, 5G, 5H, 5J, 6A, 6C, 6F, 6G, 6H, 6J, 6K 6N
Late Muzzleloader 5A, 5G, 5J, 6A, 6C, 6G, 6H

Amend subdivision 6 NYCRR 1.30 (b) as follows:

(b) General Provisions. The provisions of this section shall apply to the taking of antlerless deer, as described below in subdivision 1.30(e), by longbow, crossbow, muzzleloader or firearm pursuant to a DMAP as provided by Environmental Conservation Law (ECL) section 11-0903, subdivision 11. The general provisions contained in articles 11 and 71 of the ECL, except as otherwise noted herein, relating to hunting hours, the manner of taking, tagging, possession, transporting, reporting and other hunting regulations, shall apply to the hunting and taking of antlerless deer pursuant to this section.

Amend subparagraph 6 NYCRR 1.31 (b)(3)(i) and (ii) as follows:

(i) Any person who hunts or takes bear during bowhunting season must possess a license and carcass tag valid to hunt big game granting special bowhunting season privileges , except as described in subparagraph 2.3(e)(3)(iv) of this title .

(ii) Any person participating in the bowhunting bear hunting season may not have in his or her possession, or be accompanied by a person who has in his or her possession, any hunting implement other than a legal longbow , except as described in subparagraph 2.3(e)(3)(iii) of this title .

Amend subparagraph 6 NYCRR 1.40 (c)(3)(ii) as follows:

(ii) Supervision. Any youth participating in the spring youth hunt for wild turkey shall be accompanied by an adult as required by Environmental Conservation Law §11-0929. An adult who is accompanying a youth hunter pursuant to this section shall possess a valid hunting license and turkey permit. An adult who is accompanying a youth hunter may call for and otherwise assist the youth hunter, but shall not carry a firearm , crossbow, or longbow or kill a wild turkey during the youth hunt.

Amend paragraph 6 NYCRR 1.40 (f)(2) as follows:

(2) A permittee may hunt turkey with a long, recurve or compound bow or crossbow .

Amend 6 NYCRR, Part 2, entitled "More Than One Species," as follows:

Delete heading above Section 2.1 of 6 NYCRR Part 2, which reads "Deer and Bear".

Repeal existing section 6 NYCRR 2.3 and adopt a new section 2.3 as follows:

2.3 Hunting with a crossbow.

(a) Definitions.

(1) "Crossbow" means a bow and string, either compound or recurve, that launches a bolt or arrow, mounted upon a stock with a trigger that holds the string and limbs under tension until released.

(2) "Crossbow Certificate of Qualification" means a certificate, as provided by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC or department), signed by the hunter that will be using a crossbow, certifying that he or she has satisfied the department's legal requirements for crossbow training.

(b) Purpose. The provisions of this section shall apply to the taking of deer, bear, small game and upland game birds by crossbow pursuant to sections 11-0713, 11-0901, 11-0907, 11-0929 and 11-0933 of the Environmental Conservation Law.

(c) Specifications.

(1) Crossbows must have a minimum limb width of seventeen inches when uncocked and measured from the outer limb tips and a minimum length of twenty-four inches measured from the butt-stock to the front of the limbs.

(2) The peak draw weight shall be a minimum of one hundred pounds and a maximum of two hundred pounds.

(3) Crossbow triggers must have a working safety.

(4) Crossbow bolts or arrows must be a minimum of fourteen inches, not including the point or broadhead.

(d) Training. Hunters may use a crossbow to hunt wildlife, or act as a mentor for a junior hunter using a crossbow, only after they have completed training that includes at a minimum instruction in the types and parts of a crossbow, cocking and uncocking the crossbow, proper holding and use while afield, and effective shooting range. Such training shall be completed either through:

(1) a Standard Hunter Education course offered by DEC on or after April 1, 2014; or

(2) a DEC-approved on-line or other training program in the safe use of hunting with a crossbow and responsible crossbow hunting practices. The department shall post on DEC's website, and in the New York State Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide, requirements and directions for completing crossbow training. After completion of the training, the hunter and any mentor must complete and sign a crossbow certificate of qualification provided by the department. Hunters or mentors who have not attended a Standard Hunter Education course on or after April 1, 2014 must carry this signed self-certification in the field when hunting with a crossbow as proof of compliance.

(e) Hunting with a crossbow.

(1) Crossbows may only be used by hunters 14 years of age or older.

(2) Small game and upland game birds (including wild turkey) may be taken with a crossbow in accordance with the provisions of sections 1.40, 2.20 and 2.25 of this title, except that crossbows may not be used in Nassau, Suffolk, or Westchester counties.

(3) Deer and bear may be taken with a crossbow in accordance with the provisions of sections 1.11 and 1.31 of this title and the following:

(i)Crossbows may be used to take deer during the regular and muzzleloader seasons in the Northern Zone and during the regular and late muzzleloader seasons in the Southern Zone, as described in Section 1.11 of this title.

(ii) Crossbows may be used to take bear during the early and regular bear seasons in the Northern and Southern bear ranges, during the early muzzleloading season in the Northern bear range, and during the late muzzleloading season in the Southern bear range, as described in Section 1.31 of this title.

(iii) Crossbows may be used to take deer or bear during the last ten days of the early bowhunting season in the Northern Zone (same as Northern bear range) and during the last fourteen days of the early bowhunting season in the Southern Zone (same as Southern bear range).

(iv)Hunters must possess a muzzleloading hunting privilege to hunt deer or bear with a crossbow during any muzzleloader season or during open portions of the early bowhunting seasons.

Amend subparagraph 6 NYCRR 2.25 (b)(3)(i) as follows:

(i) Eligibility. In addition to the open seasons set forth in this subdivision, licensed junior hunters (12-15 years of age), accompanied by an adult in accordance with section 11-0929 of the Environmental Conservation Law, may take pheasants on special Youth Pheasant Hunting Days, as specified in this paragraph. Any adult who is accompanying a youth hunter pursuant to this section shall possess a valid hunting license, but shall not carry a firearm , crossbow or longbow or kill a pheasant during the youth hunt.