Senate OKs Deer, Feral Hog Baiting in South GA

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Atlanta, GA (AP) - The Senate has adopted a bill that removes
baiting restrictions on south Georgia deer and hog hunters.

Senators debated for nearly an hour over the issues of property
owners' rights versus equal access to hunting and "fair catches"
versus "easy kills." The chamber passed the measure Wednesday
34-17. The amended proposal now returns to the House.

Currently, hunters can lay bait for deer and hogs but may only
hunt them from 200 yards away -- a rule some argued is unfair
because more affluent hunters can grow food on their property to
use as bait without the distance restrictions.

"We've got a lot of people who have got a lot of passion about
this issue," said Sen. John Bulloch, R-Ochlocknee. "The only
issue here is how close do you want to allow hunters to be?"

His colleagues saw it differently. Among the proposal's most
vocal opponents was Sen. Nan Orrock, D-Atlanta, who questioned the
logic of setting boundaries on wildlife.

"Deer don't really know where the county lines are, do they?"
she said.

President Pro Tempore Tommie Williams made an impassioned plea
for poor hunters, many of whom he said have sought him out for
years on the legislation.

"They can't buy tracts of land. They're doing good just to make
their trailer payments," Williams said. "What they do have is a
rifle and hopefully somebody willing to let them hunt on their
land. I'm speaking for them."

Sen. Bill Heath, R-Bremen, told fellow senators he is an avid
hunter but spoke against the bill, saying it would corrupt the
sport in Georgia.

"We don't have a problem, and it doesn't need fixing," Heath
said. "Baiting changes the natural behavior of wildlife."

Heath added that the practice is unethical, gives the predator
the advantage and could infringe on the rights of property owners.
House Bill 277:

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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  • by jim Location: sandersville on Apr 5, 2011 at 04:23 PM
    Im not the poorest person but Im not rich enough to buy tract of land,tractor,fertilizer,lime,seed,land clearing,or pesticides. I can afford a couple bags of corn.I dont kill more deer than what is needed to feed my family through summer.I pray for each animal I harvest to show respect for themm. I love hunting but I dont get around like I use to getting old. Hunting over bate will help people like me. Please dont judge us God will do that. I hunt to the best of my ability. thanks ga. for considering HB277.
  • by PoorExcuse on Apr 2, 2011 at 09:13 AM
    Being "poor" is a such a tired, worn out excuse for unethical hunting by people who don't have the skill to hunt fairly.
  • by David Location: Clay County on Apr 1, 2011 at 01:03 PM
    Reply to Sen. Heath's statement. So then, what is the difference in planting bait or putting bait down, either way, it will still change the natural behavior of wildlife. Planted or scattered with a portable feeder.
  • by Anon Location: <<>> on Apr 1, 2011 at 12:20 PM
    Be careful, Diana. You might end up permanently cross-eyed from looking down your nose at other people.
  • by e Location: g on Apr 1, 2011 at 11:08 AM
    the rule is 200yds and not visible to the hunter. not many abide by the rule anyway!
  • by Bubba Location: Cairo on Apr 1, 2011 at 10:29 AM
    Yahoo! Meats back on the menu boys!
  • by Joey Location: Crawfordville on Apr 1, 2011 at 10:05 AM
    Diane probably is a feral hog, that's why she's so worked up.
  • by HMA on Apr 1, 2011 at 09:56 AM
    This has been legal in Fl. for years. The poverty angle is just political salesmanship. I hope the Gov. signs this. I will save around $1,000 on seed, fertilizer and chemicals per yr.
  • by Ashley Location: Thomasville on Apr 1, 2011 at 09:10 AM
    Diana- I will assume you are not a hunter since you say such mean and nasty things about those that are. FYI, I am a hunter. I do not eat red meat, so I hunt to survive not because I am poor. My husband and I both have great jobs, no children and we do not smoke or drink. Don't judge. It's not nice!
    • reply
      by J on Apr 1, 2011 at 10:10 AM in reply to Ashley
      I agree but I'm no genius help me out here. How are deer and hogs NOT red meat?
      • reply
        by Southern Voice on Apr 1, 2011 at 11:09 AM in reply to J
        Hog is not red meat,remeber "the other white meat". Deer is very lean with little to no fat content with a much different texture than beef.
  • by dog Location: gone on Apr 1, 2011 at 08:32 AM
    Baiting is for those who do not know how to hunt. But for thinning the herd of HOG'S and Deer if needed OK. but POISON is just STUPID and Irresponsible. Poverty has nothing to do with it. Give the deer and hog's to a homeless shelter. You can't do that with poison.
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