Hunting Over Bait? Changes May Be on the Way for Hunters

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Hunting is one south Georgia's most popular pastimes, but when it comes to the hunting over bait, opinions vary.

It all depends on who you talk to.

Georgia hunter Rick Putnam says, "I would be all for it."

Georgia hunter Dallas Burns says, "I don't particularly care for it myself."

Under the current law a hunter can put out bait like corn, but they have to be at least 200 yards away and out of sight. Under the proposed law, a hunter could be as close to the bait and their target as they want to be.

CPL Mark Carson, a ranger for the Department of Natural Resources, says, "I think it's going to take away from the fair chase. It would make it a lot easier to hunt."

Drawing an imaginary line across the middle of the state, the proposed law would only allow hunters south of that line to hunt over bait.

Putnam adds, "I don't see no harm if you stay within your limits and, you know, legal hunting times."

But not all hunters would welcome the change.

Burns says, "When you’re baiting, instead of when all of the deer are spread out, it concentrates them into one area and it allows the deer to get a bug or sick from the other deer."

The proposed bill is still in its early stages, but if the hunters we talked to are any indication, hunting over bait will be a topic of much debate. In Florida, deer hunters are already allowed to hunt over bait.