June 29, 2020

Pennsylvania: Nighttime Hunting of Predators May See Technological Improvements

Contact: Brent Miller, Senior Director, Northeastern States & States Program Administrator

On June 23, the Pennsylvania Senate voted 48-1 in favor of House Bill 1188 (HB 1188) – legislation that would allow for the use of night vision, thermal optics, and similar devices for nighttime hunting of predators. The bill is cosponsored by numerous members of the bipartisan Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, and is now eligible to be transmitted to Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus Member Governor Tom Wolf for his consideration.

If signed into law, HB 1188 would update the state code to be inclusive of recent technological advances to allow for enhanced safety and positive target acquisition while predator hunting. Introduced in April 2019, this pro-sportsmen’s bill received a strong bipartisan vote of 195-5 in the House in mid-June of last year.

The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation commends the engaged members of the Caucus for their efforts on this issue. Additional details on the status of this bill will be provided as they become available.

Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?

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