If you are one of those people who loves to shed hunt in Colorado, heads up.
In recent years, shed hunting has exploded in popularity. The antler game is as popular as it ever was and there's still only one way to get them; you have to get out and look.
Colorado shed hunting in particular is a gold mine of antlers, due to the population of animals alone. Thousands of elk and mule deer shed their antlers every year, and shed hunters go try find them every spring. However, Colorado put in place a new set of rules, and if you aren't paying attention, you're going to be breaking the law and facing fines.
To see the rules yourself, they're posted clearly on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website. Below is excerpt of some major info.
"In 2018, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission voted unanimously to prohibit shed antler and horn collection on all public lands west of I-25 from Jan.?? 1 through April 30, annually. In addition, to further protect the Gunnison sage-grouse, the new regulations include a time-of-day closure in the Gunnison Basin May 1 - 15 from sunset to 10 a.m. This closure applies to public lands in Game Management Units 54, 55, 66, 67, 551."
It also states that if you plan to shed hunt on private land, it's perfectly legal year-round, as long as you have permission and are not trespassing.
If you're caught violating these regulations, you'll be subjected to a $50 fine, an $18 surcharge, and "There will be five license suspension points applied to the violator's privilege to apply for, purchase, or exercise the benefits conferred by any licenses issued by CPW." If you accumulate 20 license suspension points, you guessed it, you're suspended from hunting or fishing (for five years, at that).
The idea behind this new law is to keep people away from the wintering areas of migrating elk and mule deer. After the closed season passes, enough winter melt should've occurred and food is normally abundant.
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