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NEW Turkey Regulation - Buddy in the Blind


HateHumminbird

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A few months ago in the Outdoor News, I saw about a 5 line blip on a "buddy in the blind" law, allowing unlicensed hunters to call or otherwise assist a licensed hunter in the taking of a wild turkey. As many of you know, this is legal in many states, including WI, and has been under debate for some time now.

Originally, as posted in the Outdoor News, it was before the legislature for proposal and review, and aplied to people of all ages. However, this is the response I just received from the DNR:

quote:

"The change is as follows:

Unlicensed adult age 18 or older may assist a turkey hunter under age 18. They cannot possess a firearm or bow and cannot charge a fee."

I am awaiting confirmation of this message from the DNR, so I'll keep you posted on the changes.

I was somewhat hoping that it would include people of all ages, as there are older hunters that could benefit from such a law as well. Furthermore, I have friends I'd like to call for that are far more immature than anyone under 18 :-)

What's the general concensus out there? Is this a good thing or a bad thing? Should the law include assisting hunters of all ages?

Joel

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Geez, I never gave this any thought. The first year I went, on the last day a buddy who had filled his tag went with me and called. I got a 24 lb Tom (this was in Iowa). Now I wonder if I was illegal. Anyway, I learned a lot about calling that day and that experience hooked me for life. My thought is that it would be quite helpful for newbies like I was.

Nick

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I talked with a conservation officer about this and he said that as long as the person doesn't have a gun you can go with. I have done this ever since then ( about 3 years ago). I assume he was correct. Not sure where a person can find out for sure.

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I'm all for letting someone assist another hunter in the taking of a bird as long as only the hunter shoots his own bird.
The 5 day hunting season we get here in Mn. is way to short for me!

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I have no problem with someone assisting with calling & spotting etc. I can see where they probably wouldn't want a person flushing turkeys for someone else.

It's my understanding under the current law (prior to the recent change), that a licensed hunter who's filled their tag can assist as long as he's unarmed. An unlicensed person could accompany a hunter, but couldn't assist in calling or possess a weapon.

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Just received an update from Ed Boggess, Chief of the Policy section, Division of Fish & Wildlife with the DNR. His statement has cleared things up immensely:

quote:

Jim asked me to clarify this for you. The law passed in two versions, with the one that passed last taking precedence. The first version would have limited the assisting to adults assisting youth, but that was superseded by another bill that passed a few days later (Laws of Minnesota for 2004, Chapter 255, Section 38) that reads:


"An unlicensed adult age 18 or older may assist a licensed wild turkey hunter. The unlicensed adult may not shoot or possess a firearm or bow while assisting a hunter under this paragraph and may not charge a fee for the assistance."


In short, any unlicensed adult may assist any other licensed wild turkey hunter as long as the unlicensed adult does not possess a firearm or bow and does not charge a fee. I hope this clears things up.

Looks like we'll be able to *legally* call for any licensed hunter, provided we have no gun or money from the hunter. This means a longer turkey season for myself and probably many of you. Hopefully, this new law proves beneficial to turkey hunting in MN.

Joel

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

this may change how we apply this coming spring. It's tough trying to hunt with 3 kids over 5 days and have everyone feel like dad is there to help them out. We might spread out across a couple seasons now.

Borch

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I'm thinking this will dramatically increase the number of applicants. I can hear it now- Person #1 "I never have hunted before" Person #2 " That's ok- I will call for ya- go ahead and apply"
Remember- every applicant pays a fee- no matter how many permits there actually are!
One last item that caught my eye- No pay for the helper- ie. No guides- Wanna bet that the $$$$$ hungry DNR starts charging for a guide license in the near future.

They have already F...up the Bear hunt. Moving on to turkey hunting next!

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Not sure if the number of applicants will increase that much, but I do think that it will definitely change the way people apply. Rather than 4 apps for the same season in the Borch household, there will be 4 apps spread out to other seasons, probably including a later one or two depending upon preference. Many people who have ignored the rules have been doing this for years.

Next year, my brothers, cousins, and friends will really spread out in terms of season and preference, increasing everybody's opportunity to hunt. Whatever happens with the applications, it's a changing game. I'll try to be ahead of the curve, but who knows what this will do?

As for guiding.....I think guiding for turkeys in MN would be difficult, at least in my neck of the woods with the abundance of small tracts and many private landowners. Maybe down in the SE with bigger farms or tracts of land? Getting paid to hunt turkeys......don't tempt me with such thoughts!

Joel

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Last Year- I turned 4 people down that wanted me to help/assist them to learn how to call. They did not apply. If they ask this year- Ye HA! I wasn't planning on hunting this year- cause I won't get drawn cause I will have a low pref. cause I got a tag last year.
Maybe this isn't a bad deal!!!

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Seamonster,

MN was the only state that I've heard of that had that silly rule. When I asked the DNR about it two years ago, because my daughter and myself couldn't hunt the same season as we were getting surplus ones that year, they couldn't give me a logical answer for the rule. Other than that's they way it was with deer hunting.

Fact is that the number of people applying has been going up dramaticly each year. Just the way it's gonna be with a relatively new game animal to be hunting(in MN anyways). Heck a lot of people still don't realize that we have turkeys in MN. grin.gif

For my freinds in other states who haven't been drawn or have already taken their bird(s), it's a way for them to continue hunting and pass on the tradition.

Hopefully these birds continue to do well and the number of permit areas and permits will continue to increase.

Borch

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