Tags: Gun Control | hunting in south dakota | private lands

Hunting in South Dakota: 5 Things to Know About Hunting on Private Lands

By    |   Thursday, 04 June 2015 10:41 AM

Hunting in South Dakota is steeped in tradition that enthusiasts from across the United States and the world have come to respect and enjoy. South Dakota boasts a broad range of animals that one can hunt such as pheasant, elk, antelope, waterfowl, and cottontail rabbit.

Although the state facilitates the expansion and popularization of hunting, there is significantly more privately held hunting land than that which is publicly held.

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A great deal of private land has been leased for public use, leading to over five million acres that are available during the various hunting seasons.

However, this dichotomy between public and private land can create confusion for the general public and even cause problems for experienced hunters. Due to the popularity of hunting on private land in South Dakota, here are five things hunters need to know:

1. Walk-in Areas
Walk-in areas are provided by private citizens of South Dakota who have leased their land to the state for hunting. These areas are well-marked by “Walk-in Area” signs and are open to foot traffic only. Currently, there are more than 900,000 acres of private land leased to the state through this program.

2. Controlled Hunter Access Program (CHAP)
Similar to the Walk-in Areas, CHAP helps foster the partnership between private landholders and the state to facilitate more hunting grounds. CHAP began in 2008, and is geared specifically to big game hunting.

Hunters using CHAP land must check-in with the landowners and strictly agree to no littering, camping, drinking alcohol, fires, or smoking.

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3. Unarmed Retrieval on Private Land
According to the South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks website, “Hunters may retrieve lawfully taken small game without permission from private or public land (except National Wildlife Refuges closed to such entry) if they are unarmed and retrieve on foot. Permission is needed to retrieve big game, including turkeys.”

4. Trespassing

The state forbids hunters in South Dakota from hunting or trapping any game “on private land without permission from the owner or lessee except in that part of the Black Hills Fire Protection District south of Interstate 90. In that area, no person may enter private land to hunt if the land is posted or if told by the owner or lessee not to do so.”

5. Tribal Reservations
Unlike other private or state-owned land, the tribes themselves control hunting laws on reservation land. If an individual seeks permission to hunt on tribal lands, they must contact the tribe and acquire permits authorized by them.

This article is for information only. Please check current regulations before hunting.

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Hunting in South Dakota is steeped in tradition that enthusiasts from across the United States and the world have come to respect and enjoy.
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Thursday, 04 June 2015 10:41 AM
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