February 7, 2023

A New Law In Maine That Nobody Seems To Know About

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A new law recently passed in Maine prohibits anyone from bringing a deer, moose or elk killed outside of Maine into the state unless it has been deboned and all tissue from the skull removed. This also applies to anyone transporting such animals through the state on the way to another destination. Of course this effort is to protect the state from contracting chronic wasting disease.

But why is it noone seems to know anything about this new law? Hunter safety classes are being taught and instructors seem unaware of the new legislation because they aren’t teaching it. According to an article in the Portsmouth Herald, one such gun club and safety instructor knows nothing of the new law.

Art Lamontagne is a past president of the Sanford Rod and Gun Club and a 20-year hunting safety instructor, currently for Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Lamontagne said Wednesday a hunter-safety class taught there on Tuesday did not inform people of the new law because no one knew about it.

“We are inundated with literature from the state with tips and all sorts of things,” he said. “I went through it all yesterday and there’s nothing there (about the new law).”

New Hampshire has a restrictive law about the importation of the same cervids shot outside their state. But the difference is any game killed in another state that has known outbreaks of chronic wasting disease, has to be deboned and brain tissue removed. If you are bringing it it from a state that is declared CWD free, the law doesn’t apply.

The law for maine was put together by the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the Department of Agriculture, the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, Maine bow hunters and state deer and elk farmers.

I journeyed over to the MDIF&W website to see if I could find the new law. There it was, buried under hunting and trapping laws. It wasn’t until I opted to click on the link for chronic wasting disease did I find this:

NOTICE: It is now illegal for individuals to bring into Maine cervid carcasses or parts, except that the following carcass parts may be imported and possessed:

1. boned-out meat;

2. hardened antlers;

3. skull caps that have beeen cleaned free of brain and other tissues;

4 capes and hides with no skull attached;

5. teeth; and

6. finished taxidermy mounts.

On the same page it went on to say a bit more about the ruling.

This transportation restriction applies to both any cervid wild by nature and to any cervid killed in a commercial hunting preserve, that are taken in any state, province, or country outside of Maine. Any person who imports into Maine any cervid carcass or parts described above and is notified that the animal has tested positive for CWD must report the test results to the Department within 72 hours of receiving notification.

It is legal for individuals to transport through the State of Maine cervid carcasses or parts destined for other states, provinces, and countries. Such transportation is to occur without undue delay and using the most reasonably direct route through Maine to the final destination for the cervid carcass or parts and in a manner that is both leak-proof and that revents their exposure to the environment.

Hat tip for the news tip goes to Moose at Moose Droppings.

Tom Remington