Comments to be Received on Red Wolf-Related Rules

By / Fishing / Monday, 22 December 2014 05:00

RALEIGH, N.C. (Dec. 11, 2014) — The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission will hold three public hearings in January to receive comments on rules regarding conditional coyote hunting in the five-county red wolf reintroduction area in northeastern North Carolina and the designation of the red wolf as a state listed threatened species. The public hearings will begin at 7 p.m. on these dates and locations:
• Jan. 5 at the Columbia High School auditorium, 902 East Main Street, Columbia, for temporary rulemaking.
• Jan. 20 at Swain Auditorium, 200 East Church Street, Edenton, for permanent rulemaking and as part of the District 1 annual public hearing.
• Jan. 21 at the courthouse, 302 Broad Street, New Bern, for permanent rulemaking and as part of the District 2 annual public hearing.  
As amended, the rule regulating coyote hunting, 15A NCAC 10B .0219, would prohibit all nighttime hunting of coyotes in the counties of Dare, Tyrrell, Hyde, Beaufort and Washington counties. Daytime hunting from ½ hour before sunrise to ½ hour after sunset would be allowed on private property with a coyote hunting permit, which will be available at www.ncwildlife.org. Daytime hunting would be allowed on state-owned game lands with a special hunt permit. Hunters would be required to report all harvests.
The amended rules will fulfill the requirements of a court order in regards to a lawsuit brought by the Southern Environmental Law Center on behalf of the Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife and the Animal Welfare Institute against the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. The suit alleged the Wildlife Commission violated the federal Endangered Species Act by allowing coyote hunting in Dare, Hyde, Beaufort, Tyrrell and Washington counties where an experimental reintroduction of the red wolf is occurring. A court-ordered injunction issued in May halted coyote hunting in the five counties, except under extremely limited circumstances. The proposed rules will establish the process to allow conditional coyote hunting in the five counties. In North Carolina’s other 95 counties, coyote hunting regulations allow coyote hunting on private land at any time, day or night, with no bag limit, and on public land at night with a permit. Coyotes are found in all 100 counties of the state and pose a predatory threat to pets, livestock and native wildlife. Hunting and trapping are effective tools for landowners to manage coyote populations on a localized basis. Comments can be made online at ncwildlife.org/Proposed Regulations.aspx or by letter to N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, 1701 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, N.C. 27699-1701. For more information on Wildlife Commission temporary rulemaking, go to www.ncwildlife.org/ProposedRegulations.aspx

 

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