Cmte Sub for Senate Bill No. 2783

BY: Senator(s) Posey

     AMEND by striking Section 2 in its entirety and inserting in lieu thereof the following:

     SECTION 2.  Section 49-7-41, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     49-7-41.  (1)  The commission may set the bag limits for game animals, birds and fish, unless the bag limits are established by the Legislature by statute.

     (2)  (a)  The bag limit on antlered deer is one (1) per day, not to exceed three (3) per license year.  An antlered deer must have antlers as prescribed by the commissionThe commission shall have plenary authority to establish deer management zones, and adopt bag limit, antler restriction and enforcement regulations to manage deer populations within the deer management zones.

          (b)  Any antlered deer may be taken by permit when it is necessary to manage deer on lands under the deer management assistance program or wildlife management areas.  A written management justification issued by the department * * * must accompany any request for such a permit.  Any antlered deer harvested under this permit must be identified with a tag immediately upon possession.  Antlered deer taken by permit shall not be subject to the daily bag limit or the annual bag limit on antlered deer.  The department shall include a report on permits issued, to whom issued and deer harvested in the department's annual deer program report.

     (3)  (a)  The bag limit on antlerless deer is one (1) per day, not to exceed five (5) per license year. * * *  Antlerless deer may be taken only in the areas prescribed by order of the commission.  It is illegal to take a spotted fawn in any season.

          (b)  It is unlawful for a nonresident to kill an antlerless deer except:  (i) a nonresident may take antlerless deer on lands that the title is vested in the nonresident or on lands that the nonresident has leased the hunting and fishing rights; or (ii) a nonresident who has a native son or daughter nonresident lifetime sportsman license or a resident lifetime sportsman license may take antlerless deer on private lands, wildlife management areas or national wildlife refuges.

     (4)  The bag limit on antlerless deer set by this section shall not apply to private lands under the deer management assistance program or the fee-based antlerless program as approved by the department.