Casperson & Pavlov introduce bills to outlaw the use of aerial drones while hunting.

Last week Senator’s Tom Casperson and Phil Pavlov introduced SB’s 926 & 927, respectively. The bills seek to clarify current Michigan law by outlawing the use of aerial drones in hunting and as a tool to harass hunters.
SB 926 & 927 would:
• Make it illegal to use an aerial drone to harass a hunter who is lawfully taking game, and;
• Make it illegal to take game with the use of the drone.
The use of aerial drones is becoming increasingly popular in civilian hands and there are videos on the internet of the machines being used to spot, stalk and hunt wildlife. Additionally, PETA announced last year that it was planning to use drones to harass hunters. This is yet another tool the anti-hunters will attempt to use against law abiding hunters and we must act fast to outlaw this tactic.
Other states and even some national organizations have already banned the use of aerial drones in the taking of game or are currently working on legislation that would ban them. The Boone & Crockett Club recently announced that it would not recognize drone-assisted hunts into its record books because they violated principles of fair chase. Alaska, Montana and Colorado have already banned their use for hunting, and there are proposals in Wyoming, New Mexico, and Vermont to prohibit their use for hunting.
Current Michigan law prohibits hunting from an aircraft, though it is unclear whether this ban would prevent the use of drones. Adopting a ban to proactively oppose the use of drones in hunting, scouting or harassing hunters before they are widespread would send a strong message that MUCC and Michigan support fair chase methods.
It should be also noted that MUCC has a resolution from Region III that seeks to do exactly what Casperson and Pavlov are proposing, outlaw the use of drones in hunting and outlaw it as a use of hunter harassment. This resolution will come before members at the MUCC annual convention in June.

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