Have you heard the term muzzleloader? How about black powder gun? If you have, chances you're ready for the week-long primitive weapons deer hunting season that begins on Saturday, Oct. 13.
According to a press release from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, during the 2011 primitive weapons season, more than 50,000 deer hunters harvested slightly more than 14,000 deer using a primitive weapon. Officials say that the rate of deer harested has increased over the last few season although the number of hunters participating hasn't really gone up.
“The primitive weapons deer season provides hunters an opportunity to hunt with traditional or inline black powder firearms, or to continue hunting with archery gear,” said John W. Bowers, assistant chief of Game Management. “It is a chance to ‘get in the woods’ with a different type of firearm prior to the opening of the more traditional modern firearms deer season.”
More than one million acres of public hunting land is available to hunters in Georgia, according to the release. This includes more than 100 state-operated wildlife management areas, many of which offer special hunts throughout the season. Some of these include primitive weapons hunts. Dates and locations for these hunts are available in the 2012-2013 Georgia Hunting Seasons and Regulations guide. An online copy of the Regulations guidebook and WMA
maps can be found at www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting .
These rules include the following;
- Hunters may harvest up to 10 antlerless deer and no more than two antlered deer (one of the two antlered deer must have a minimum of four points, one inch or longer, on one side of the antlers).
- During primitive weapons season, hunters may use archery equipment, muzzleloading shotguns (20 gauge or larger) and muzzleloading firearms (.44 caliber or larger) to pursue whitetails.
- All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during primitive weapons season.
- Scopes and other optical sighting devices are legal for muzzleloading firearms and archery equipment.
- To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license, big game license and a current deer harvest record. If hunting on a wildlife management area, a WMA license also is required.
To purchase a license, visit www.georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes.
According to the press release, sportsmen and women provide more than $30 million each year to fund wildlife conservation in the state through license fees and self-imposed excise taxes collected on the purchase of firearms, ammunition, archery equipment and fishing equipment.
For more information on deer hunting seasons and regulations, visit www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/regulations .