Here are three common violations for waterfowl hunting cited by North Carolina Wildlife Officers and how you can avoid them.
1. Unplugged Shotguns – The transition from small game hunting might be a contributing factor for this violation, but regardless of the excuse, waterfowl hunting requires a plug in your semi-auto or pump shotgun to limit the capacity to three. (Unplugged guns are allowed from Feb. 6 – March 10 for Light Geese, which includes snow and blue geese, and Ross’ geese.)
2. Shooting After Permissible Time – While it’s important not to forget your federal duck stamp and approved shells rather than lead shot, don’t forget to stop hunting at sunset. “This happens, particularly over beaver swamps rather than open water, when you don’t pay attention to the time or you try too hard to get in as much hunting as you can, “said Wildlife Officer Luke Lucas in Nash County. “Check the sunrise and sunset table in the back of the Regulations Digest.”
3. Motorboat Violations – OK, maybe that’s one you wouldn’t expect, but plenty of waterfowl hunters have gotten citations because of their boat is not in compliance. “Usually, folks have a small boat to run to-and-from the blinds and they’ve forgotten to renew vessel registration or didn’t put the proper number of life vests onboard,” said Wildlife Officer Branden Jones, as he got ready for patrol in Currituck County. “You have to follow boating and hunting regulations.”