PETA’s latest attempt to thwart hunters, a new line of aerial spy drones, has been shot down by Illinois lawmakers.
On January 1, 2014, Illinois enacted a new law that prohibits the use of drones to interfere with hunters or fishermen, partly in response to reports of PETA’s intentions that could have “interfere[d] with another person’s lawful taking of wildlife or aquatic life,” to quite the original bill written by Illinois State Representative Adam Brown.
Last October, PETA launched their “Air Angels” line of drones designed to monitor hunters’ activity from the skies. PETA offers the hunter drones — which are equipped with cameras and wi-fi — to its members for $324.99 on the organization’s website. Members are encouraged to use the drones to monitor and capture “illegal” hunting activity.
“The intention is simply to monitor what hunters are actually doing, and whether they’re engaged in any illegal activity, such as drinking in possession of a firearm or illegally using spotlights or feedlures,” Jared Goodman, PETA’s director of animal law told the Verge.
A large portion of the hunting community in the US have objected to the PETA hunter drones, noting that they interfere with hunting and are an invasion of privacy.
RELATED: Read our exclusive story about an ongoing hunter interference case in Massachusetts.
“Imagine drones running over your duck decoys or near your tree stand,” said Doug Jeanneret of the U.S Sportsman’s Alliance, in a piece from Guns.com.
PETA is arguing that the drones don’t interfere with hunters, and cause no violation of privacy, and they plan to challenge the law.
Here’s a video that shows the PETA hunter drones in action.
The PETA hunter drone case is part of a lager nationwide debate on the use of drones in domestic and public space. The issue is relatively new, considering drone technology is fairly recent. Last year, we reported on a small Colorado town that is voting on a law to allow hunting drones in public airspace for bounties.