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Hunting in Texas: 9 Things for Landowners to Know About Hunting on Private Property

By    |   Thursday, 04 June 2015 02:47 PM

Hunting is huge in Texas, and if you own enough property to hunt on, leasing your land to state-managed hunts can pay back in several ways.

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The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department holds public hunting on private land leased from landowners who wish to have surplus deer culled from their properties, and while this culling protects the property from over grazing, it also offers some tax incentives.

For those considering opening their property to hunting, here are several things to keep in mind.

1. Managed public hunt drawings allow hunters to apply for a large variety of supervised hunts on private properties.

2. When the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department leases private lands, the lease terms limit the number of hunters, so you don't have to worry about being overrun. While hunts on private lands can be done during the general deer season, you, as the landowner, can elect to hold them late in the season. Sometimes, the hunts on private land occur during an extended season.

3. Hunts on private lands are governed by statewide hunting regulations regarding seasons, bag limits, and means and methods unless otherwise stated by the landowner.

Landowners may add further bag limits imposed through mutual agreement with the department. In fact, landowners may add their own rules and procedures during management hunts.

You can set the bag limit, define what is legal game, tell hunters where to hunt, monitor hunting activities, and check out hunters at the end of the hunt period.

4. The landowner is not
required to provide guide service, food, or lodging.

5. The hunters are responsible for keeping their assigned hunt time and location. If the hunter fails to meet that requirement, drinks alcohol, becomes unruly, or violates state laws, they forfeit all rights to hunt and can be told to leave the property.

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6. As a landowner you are
responsible for administering the hunts. Landowners will get a listing of hunter names and telephone numbers, the deer hunt type and hunt period on the ranch. The landowner is expected to provide staffing to administer the hunting activity and provide supervision.

7. After the hunt, the department pays a lease fee. For deer hunting, the department lists that as about $150 for each antlerless/spike hunter position and $500 for each management buck hunter position.

8. The department website says landowners who lease their property to hunting or fishing have limited liability to the users.  Landowners should familiarize themselves with the law prior to leasing.

9. There is potential for property tax conversion when leasing property to hunters.

Consult the Agricultural Property Tax Conversion for Wildlife Management document and other related papers listed on the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department website.

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

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Hunting is huge in Texas, and if you own enough property to hunt on, leasing your land to state-managed hunts can pay back in several ways.
hunting in texas, texas, landowners
Thursday, 04 June 2015 02:47 PM
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