googleedbee33913d5e8a6.html The Signs Are Popping Up All Over

The Signs Are Popping Up All Over

BY EDDIE WRIGHT


photo by Hailey Cheyenne Nixon

Welcome back all yinz hunters!

The signs are starting to pop up all over. The leaves are changing, the air is getting crisp, and for many, this means a new hunting season is about to begin!


To the camo-clad arrow slingers, the orange army riflemen and the traditionalist in buckskins toting black powders, I would like to say, “the best of luck to you all!” There are some big changes happening this year and it’s hard to imagine leaving work for Thanksgiving break and telling my fellow hunters “good luck Saturday.” Opening day on Monday has been a long-standing tradition, but times are changing.


Hopefully, this change will allow more of our brothers and sisters extended time in the field with friends and family. Some say a hunter’s greatest reward is time spent enjoying

nature, spending time with friends and family, and simply putting food on the table. Whatever you like the most about the outdoors is up to you!


I enjoy all of the above, but I truly love bringing a piece of the outdoors home with me to appreciate year-round! When we are fortunate enough to harvest an animal, some of us like to display our trophies and preserve our memories. There are numerous ways to display our prizes depending on style, space, and budget. Some options include:


Basic skull plate mount: If you are looking for something simple and inexpensive, this can be quite elegant. These can be simple and homemade or there are store-bought

kit assemblies that are easy to use with no special tools or training necessary.


European mount: These mounts can vary greatly in cost and complexity from DIY to pro. There is your basic bleached white to multi-color patterns, hydro dipped, boiled and

hand-cleaned, or beetle cleaned.


Neck and shoulder mounts: Provide a truly natural look, but leave this work to the professionals! In the state of Pennsylvania a taxidermy license is required to mount

animals. Unlike the euro mounts and skull plates these need some field prep for a quality end product. Some tips you may want to consider are: First and foremost, use caution when dragging your harvest out of the woods trying not to damage the hide. Secondly, while caping your deer be sure to leave enough hide for the size mount you want, and lastly, don’t forget that your trophy should be stored in a cool dry place. If you can’t get it to a taxidermist within 48 hours, freezing is highly recommended.


Full body mounts: Definitely leave this to the pros! While very beautiful and lifelike they are holy crap expensive! But hey, if you have the budget, space, and permission from your wife, then I say, go for it!


I am very proud of every deer I have ever taken, buck or doe, large rack, or none at all. That being said I want to shed some light on some unsportsmanlike behavior in the outdoor sports community on social media. For lack of a better term let’s call it hunt shaming. It’s hunters belittling other hunters for the size of the deer the harvest or the means by which they harvested. Any deer harvested deserves respect. The choice of weapon is a personal one and shouldn’t need to be defended. If you can’t say something nice, say nothing at all.


Or here’s a thought, just say congratulations!


Seasons and Bag Limits

From The Pennsylvania Game Commission

It is unlawful to hunt wildlife, except foxes, crows and coyotes, on Sundays. These are the seasons and bag limits for most hunting and trapping seasons from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020.


2019-20 BIG GAME SEASONS

BLACK BEAR

  • Black Bear, Archery (WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D): Sept. 21-Nov. 29. Only 1 bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear, Archery (WMU 5B): Oct. 5-Nov. 16. Only one bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear, Archery (Statewide): Oct. 28-Nov. 9. Only one bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear, Muzzleloader (Statewide): Oct. 19-26. Only one bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear (Statewide): Nov. 23-27. Only 1 bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear, Special Firearms (Statewide): Oct. 24-26, Junior and Senior License Holders, Disabled Person Permit (to use a vehicle) Holders, and Pennsylvania residents serving on active duty in U.S. Armed Services or in the U.S. Coast Guard only. Also included are persons who have reached or will reach their 65th birthday in the year of the application for a license and hold a valid adult license or qualify for license and fee exemptions under section 2706. Only one bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear (WMUs 1B, 2C, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D, 4E and 5A): Nov. 30-Dec. 7. Only 1 bear may be taken during the license year.

  • Black Bear (WMUs 2B, 5B, 5C and 5D): Nov. 30-Dec. 14. Only one bear may be taken during the license year.

DEER

  • Deer, Archery (Antlered and Antlerless) WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D: Sept. 21- Nov. 29 and Dec. 26-Jan. 25, 2020. One antlerless deer with each required antlerless license. One antlered deer per hunting license year.

  • Deer, Archery (Antlered and Antlerless) (Statewide): Oct. 5-Nov. 16 and Dec. 26-Jan. 20. One antlered deer per hunting license year. One antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlerless Muzzleloader (Statewide): Oct. 19-26. An antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlerless Special Firearms (Statewide): Oct. 24-26. Junior and Senior License Holders, Mentored Youth Permit Holders, Disabled Person Permit (to use a vehicle) Holders, and Pennsylvania residents serving on active duty in U.S. Armed Services or in the U.S. Coast Guard only, with required antlerless license. Also included are persons who have reached or will reach their 65th birthday in the year of the application for a license and hold a valid adult license or qualify for license and fee exemptions under section 2706. One antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer (Antlered and Antlerless): WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D: Nov. 30-Dec. 14. One antlered deer per hunting license year. An antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer (Antlered Only) WMUs 1A, 1B, 2A, 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D, 4E, 5A and 5B: Nov. 30-Dec. 6. One antlered deer per hunting license year. (Holders of valid DMAP antlerless deer permits may harvest antlerless deer on DMAP properties during this period.)

  • Deer (Antlered and Antlerless) WMUs 1A, 1B, 2A, 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D, 4E, 5A and 5B: Dec. 7-14. One antlered deer per hunting license year. An antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlered or Antlerless Flintlock (Statewide): Dec. 26-Jan. 20. One antlered deer per hunting license year, or one antlerless deer and an additional antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlered or Antlerless Flintlock (WMUs 2B, 5C, 5D): Dec. 26-Jan. 25. One antlered deer per hunting license year, or one antlerless deer and an additional antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlerless Extended Regular Firearms (Allegheny, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties): Dec. 26-Jan. 25. An antlerless deer with

  • each required antlerless license.

  • Deer, Antlerless (Military Bases): Hunting permitted on days established by the U.S. Department of the Army at Letterkenny Army Depot, Franklin County; New Cumberland Army Depot, York County; and Fort Detrick, Raven Rock Site, Adams County. An antlerless deer with each required antlerless license.

ELK

  • Elk, Archery (Antlered or Antlerless): Sept. 14-28.

  • Elk (Antlered or Antlerless): Nov. 4-9. Only one elk may be taken during the license year.

  • Elk, Extended (Antlered and Antlerless): Nov. 11-16. Only one elk may be taken during the license year. Eligible elk license recipients who haven’t harvested an elk by Nov. 9, in designated areas.

  • Elk, Late (Antlerless only): Jan. 4-11, 2020.

WILD TURKEY

  • Wild Turkey Fall (Male or Female): WMU 1B – Nov. 2-Nov. 9; WMU 2B (Shotgun and bow and arrow) – Nov. 2-22 and Nov. 28-29; WMUs 1A, 2A, 4A and 4B – Nov. 2-Nov. 9 and Nov. 28 and 29; WMUs 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4C, 4D and 4E – Nov.2-16 and Nov. 28 and 29; WMU 2C – Nov. 2-Nov. 22 and Nov. 28 and 29;WMU 5A – Nov. 7-9; WMU 5B – Nov. 5-7; WMUs 5C and 5D – CLOSED TO FALL TURKEY HUNTING.

  • Wild Turkey Spring (Bearded bird only): Special season for eligible junior hunters, with required license, and mentored youth – April 25, 2020. Only 1 spring gobbler may be taken during this hunt.

  • Wild Turkey Spring (Bearded bird only): May 2-30, 2020. Daily limit 1, season limit 2. (Second spring gobbler may be only taken by persons who possess a valid special wild turkey license.) From May 2-16, legal hunting hours are one-half hour before sunrise until noon; from May 18-30, legal hunting hours are one-half hour before sunrise until one-half hour after sunset.


2019-20 SMALL GAME SEASONS

BOBWHITE QUAIL

  • Oct. 19-Nov. 29, Dec. 16-24 and Dec. 26-Feb. 29 (8 daily, 24 possession).

COTTONTAIL RABBITS

  • Rabbits, Special season for eligible junior hunters, with or without required license: Oct. 5-Oct. 19 (4 daily, 12 possession).

  • Rabbits: Oct. 19-Nov. 29, Dec. 16-24 and Dec. 26-Feb. 29 (4 daily, 12 possession).

CROWS

  • July 5-April 12, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday only. No limit.

PHEASANTS

  • Pheasants, Special season for eligible junior hunters, with or without required license: Oct. 12-19 (2 daily, 6 in possession). Male pheasants only in WMUs 4E and 5A. Male and female pheasants may be taken in all other WMUs. There is no open season for taking pheasants in Wild Pheasant Recovery Areas, except as authorized by executive order.

  • Pheasants: Oct. 26-Nov. 29, Dec. 16-24 and Dec. 26-Feb. 29 (2 daily, 6 in possession). Male pheasants only in WMUs 4E and 5A. Male and female pheasants may be taken in all other WMUs. There is no open season for taking pheasants in Wild Pheasant Recovery Areas, except, as authorized by executive order.

RUFFED GROUSE

  • Oct. 19–Nov. 29 and Dec. 16-24 (2 daily, 6 possession). SNOWSHOE OR VARYING HARES

  • Dec. 26-Jan. 1, in all WMUs (1 daily, 3 possession).

SQUIRRELS

  • Squirrels, Red, Gray, Black and Fox (Combined): Special season for eligible junior hunters, with or without required license, and mentored youth: Oct. 5-19 (6 daily, 18 in possession limit after first day).

  • Squirrels, Red, Gray, Black and Fox (Combined): Oct. 19-Nov. 29; Dec. 16-24 and Dec. 26-Feb. 29 (6 daily, 18 possession).

STARLINGS AND ENGLISH SPARROWS

  • No closed season, except during the antlered and antlerless deer season. No limit.

WOODCHUCKS (GROUNDHOGS)

  • No closed season, except on Sundays and during the regular firearms deer seasons. No limit.


2019-20 WATERFOWL & MIGRATORY GAME BIRDS SEASONS

Additional information in the Digest.


DUCKS, MERGANSERS & COOTS:

  • Lake Erie Zone: Oct. 28-Jan. 4.

  • Northwest Zone: Oct. 12-Dec. 14 and Dec. 27-Jan. 1.

  • North Zone: Oct. 12-26 and Nov. 19-Jan. 11.

  • South Zone: Oct. 19-26 and Nov. 19-Jan. 18.

  • Ducks & Sea Ducks (combined): 6 daily, 18 in possession. Daily limit may not include more than 2 mallards (including 1 hen mallard), 2 scaup, 2 black ducks, 3 wood ducks, 2 redheads, 4 eiders, 2 canvasbacks, 1 pintail, 1 mottled duck, 1 fulvous whistling duck, 4 scoters, 4 long-tailed ducks.

  • Mergansers: 5 daily, 15 in possession. Daily limit may not include more than 2 hooded mergansers daily.

  • Coots: 15 daily, 45 in possession.

CANADA GEESE

  • Southern James Bay Population Zone: Sept. 2-25* (1 daily, 3 in possession), Oct. 12-Nov. 29 and Dec. 16-Jan. 25 (3 daily, 9 in possession). * In western Crawford County, the season runs Sept. 2-14.

  • Resident Population Zone: Sept. 2-25 (8 daily, 24 in possession), Oct. 26-Nov. 29, Dec. 16-Jan. 18, and Jan. 31-Feb. 22 (5 daily, 15 in possession).

  • Atlantic Population Zone: Sept. 2-25 (8 daily, 24 in possession), Nov. 19-29 and Dec. 27-Jan. 18 (2 daily, 6 in possession).

LIGHT GEESE (Snow Geese & Ross’s Geese)

  • Southern James Bay Population Zone: Regular Season: Oct. 1-Jan. 25. Conservation Season: Jan. 27-April 24. (25 daily, no possession limit).

  • Resident Population Zone: Regular Season: Oct. 22-Feb. 22. Conservation Season: Feb. 24-April 24. (25 daily, no possession limit).

  • Atlantic Population Zone: Regular Season: Oct. 1-Jan. 25. Conservation Season: Jan. 27-April 24. (25 daily, no possession limit).

WEBLESS BIRDS & BRANT

  • Brant, All Goose Zones: Oct. 26-Nov. 29 (2 daily, 6 in possession).

  • Common Snipe (Statewide): Oct. 19-Nov. 29 and Dec. 16-24 (8 daily, 24 in possession).

  • Doves (Statewide): Sept. 2-Nov. 29 and Dec. 21-Jan. 4 (15 daily, 45 in possession).

  • Gallinules (Statewide): Sept. 2-Nov. 21 (3 daily, 9 in possession).

  • Virginia & Sora Rails (combined) (Statewide): Sept. 2-Nov. 21 (3 daily, 9 in possession).

  • Woodcock (Statewide): Oct. 19-Nov. 29 and Dec. 16-24 (3 daily, 9 in possession).

YOUTH WATERFOWL DAYS

  • Licensed junior hunters ages 12-16 can hunt ducks, mergansers, Canada geese, coots and gallinules.

  • Statewide: Sept. 14. Lake Erie Zone: Oct. 19. Northwest

  • Zone: Dec. 21. North Zone: Jan. 18. South Zone: Jan. 25.


2019-20 FURBEARER HUNTING SEASONS

  • BOBCAT (WMUs 2A, 2C, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D and 4E): Jan. 11-Feb. 5. One bobcat per license year. Licensed furtakers may obtain one permit each.

  • COYOTES: No closed season. Unlimited. Outside of any big game season (deer, bear, elk and turkey), coyotes may be taken with a hunting license or a furtaker license, and without wearing orange. During any big game season, coyotes may be taken while lawfully hunting big game or with a furtaker license.

  • FOXES: Oct. 26-Feb. 22, unlimited.

  • OPOSSUM: No closed season, except Sundays. No limits.

  • PORCUPINES: Oct. 12-Feb. 1, 2020. (3 daily, season limit of 10).

  • RACCOONS: Oct. 26-Feb. 22, unlimited.

  • STRIPED SKUNKS: No closed season, except Sundays. No limits.

  • WEASELS: No closed season, except Sundays. No limits.

2019-20 TRAPPING SEASONS

  • BEAVERS (Statewide): Dec. 26-March 31 (Limits vary depending on WMU).

  • BOBCAT (WMUs 2A, 2C, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D and 4E): Dec. 21-Jan. 12. One bobcat per license year. Licensed furtakers may obtain one permit each.

  • COYOTES and FOXES: Oct. 27-Feb. 23. No limit.

  • COYOTES and FOXES, CABLE RESTRAINTS (Statewide): Dec. 26-Feb. 23. No limit. Participants must pass cable restraint certification course.

  • FISHER (WMUs 1B, 2C, 2D, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, 4A, 4B, 4C, 4D and 4E): Dec. 21-Jan. 5. One fisher per license year. Licensed furtakers may obtain one permit each.

  • MINKS and MUSKRATS: Nov. 23-Jan. 12. Unlimited.

  • OPOSSUM: Oct. 27-Feb. 23. No limit.

  • RACCOONS: Oct. 27-Feb. 23. No limit.

  • RIVER OTTER (WMUs 3C and 3D): Feb. 15-22, 2020. One river otter per license year. Licensed furtakers may obtain one permit each.

  • STRIPED SKUNKS: Oct. 27-Feb. 23. No limit.

  • WEASELS: Oct. 27-Feb. 23. No limit.


2019-20 FALCONRY SEASONS

  • BOBWHITE QUAIL: Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (8 daily, 24 possession).

  • COTTONTAIL RABBITS: Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (4 daily, 12 possession).

  • RINGNECK PHEASANTS: (Male or Female combined): Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (2 daily, 6 possession).

  • RUFFED GROUSE: Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (2 daily, 6 possession),

  • SQUIRRELS (Combined): Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (6 daily, 18 possession).

  • SNOWSHOE OR VARYING HARES: Sept. 2-March 31, 2020 (1 daily, 3 possession).

No open season on other wild birds or mammals.

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