Hunters here are some things to consider when planning your day in the bushTuesday, October 01, 2013 by: Kate AdamsOPP News Release
The West Parry Sound Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Officers will be working closely with the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) Conservation Officers throughout the hunting season to ensure that hunter safety and ethical hunting practices are in the thoughts of all hunting enthusiasts.
Here are some things to consider when planning your day in the bush:
· Ensure that you have the appropriate hunting licences for the game that you will be hunting for. It is your responsibility to know the game possession limits for your hunting area, as well as the hunting season dates for your wildlife management area.
· Check your Firearms Licence (Possession / Acquisition or Possession Only) to make sure that they are current. You must have a current licence to carry a firearm and have it with you.
· When transporting your firearm and ammunition, ensure that both are secured properly. It is an offence to have a loaded firearm in your vehicle, ATV or vessel. It is also an offence to shoot across a roadway.
· The more visible you are-the safer you will be. Wear hunter orange as per hunting regulations..
· Tell someone where you will be hunting and when you expect to be back. Take a cell phone with you if possible. When walking, let someone know where you will park your vehicle. If you become lost or injured, this will assist searchers in locating you. When lost--"hug a tree" and wait for searchers to find you.
· Dress for the weather and wear proper footwear. Fall weather can often change quickly.
· Be prepared. Pack items such as water, snacks, matches, a first aid kit, map, compass, knife, flashlight and perhaps extra gloves/socks and a wind breaker. A GPS is always a good idea.
· Hunt only where you are permitted.
· Practice safe firearm handling practices. Treat all guns as if they are loaded. Ensure that you safely carry your firearm. Keep the safety on and finger off the trigger until you are actually going to fire. Be sure of your target and beyond. If you are not sure of either, do not fire and wait. There may be others in the forest close by.
· Unload and “prove safe” your firearm before you put it away or get into your vehicle-This means unloaded, with the clip / ammunition removed and the safety on.
· Alcohol / drugs and hunting do not mix--period. Be alcohol / drug free while you are hunting and ensure that all members of your party do the same. The consequences can be tragic.
· When using an Off Road Vehicle or ATV, it is your responsibility to abide by the relevant legislation pertaining to its operation and the carrying of a firearm while travelling.
· Show consideration for others using the forest. If someone approaches you, unload your firearm as a courtesy. If the area is busy, consider a different area to hunt.
Hunter safety is everyone’s responsibility. The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) encourages all Ontario residents to practice safe and ethical hunting practices when using Ontario’s Forests. For more information about hunting regulations go to www.mnr.gov.on.ca or contact your local MNR office.
Happy and Safe Hunting to all!