Tags: Gun Control | hunting | Massachusetts | nongame | endangered

Hunting in Massachusetts: 6 Animals Designated Nongame, Endangered, Threatened and Protected Species

By    |   Tuesday, 26 May 2015 11:24 AM

There are several animals in Massachusetts that are nongame, endangered, threatened, and protected from hunting. While most are types of animals that are not usually considered game, it is good to know what they are, so you can actively avoid harming them. Many of the animals listed on the state fish and wildlife sites as endangered or threatened fall into categories such as insects, amphibians, reptiles, fish, and birds. However, a few of the animals on the list are species hunters may come into contact with when headed into the woods.

The Massachusetts list of endangered, threatened, and special concern species are protected from “take” by the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act. Here are six animals that fall under the “do not touch, harm, kill” category in Massachusetts.
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  • Moose - It is illegal to hunt moose in Massachusetts, as they have been absent from the state since the 1700s and are only now repopulating. Moose are big and can weigh up to 1000 pounds and stand 6-feet-tall at the shoulder. Males have antlers, too, but start dropping them in December. Moose are moving back into their former range and have breeding colonies in northern Worcester and Middlesex Counties. There is a public call to open up hunting for them, but so far the state has resisted doing that.

  • Hawks, Eagles and Owls - Whatever you do, don’t shoot hawks, eagles or owls. Massachusetts law states, “…Section 75A…A person, unless he holds a special permit or license issued by the director, shall not hunt or have in his possession a bird of prey. No person shall take, molest, disturb, destroy or have in his possession the nest or eggs of any such bird, unless otherwise authorized by the director. For the purposes of this section, the term “bird of prey” shall mean and include any of the following birds: eagle, osprey, hawk, owl, kite, falcon, or vulture.”
 
Fines for killing animals listed here and taking others out of season can mean hefty penalties that can reach $5000 and may even include jail time.
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  • Other Birds - You can’t kill any bird not mentioned in the state’s hunting guide or Massachusetts Migratory Game Bird Regulations.

  • Do not remove mammals from walls or holes in trees, the ground, or logs; it is highly illegal.

  • Do not take loons, grebes, bitterns, the bald eagle, harriers, sharp-shinned hawks, peregrine falcons, plovers, moorhens, and others.
  • Various Reptiles - Also protected are reptiles such as copperheads, timber rattlers, eastern rat snake, eastern worm snake, box turtles, red-bellied cooters, diamond-backed terrapins, Blanding’s turtle, bog turtle or the wood turtle. Sea turtles are off limits, too.
This article is for information only. Please check current regulations before hunting.

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There are several animals in Massachusetts that are nongame, endangered, threatened, and protected from hunting. While most are types of animals that are not usually considered game, it is good to know what they are, so you can actively avoid harming them.
hunting, Massachusetts, nongame, endangered
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2015-24-26
Tuesday, 26 May 2015 11:24 AM
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