Report Title:

Control of Game Animal Populations

Description:

Prohibits the use of snaring and poisoning as methods of controlling game-animal populations.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

985

TWENTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2003

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

relating to the control of game animal populations.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. Snares, poisons, and unattended traps are sometimes used by state agencies and private individuals and groups for the control of game-animal populations, especially under circumstances in which the populations are suspected of interfering with the management of endangered species. Death of the trapped or poisoned animal often occurs slowly and painfully, caused by shock, dehydration, starvation, and infection. The legislature finds that the use of such methods to control game-animal populations is exceptionally cruel.

Moreover, because such control methods are not narrowly crafted, animal species other than the ones targeted may also be maimed or killed. The legislature finds that at the present time, more humane and effective population control alternatives are not being fully used. The legislature declares that the inhumane treatment of one animal species for the protection of others is unconscionable.

The purpose of this Act is to:

(1) Prohibit the department of land and natural resources from using snares, poisons, or traps that are unattended or designed to injure, for the purpose of trapping or killing game animals;

(2) Make the use of such devices or methods a misdemeanor offense under the penal code; and

(3) Encourage and promote the use of public hunting for the control of game animals where it is deemed necessary to reduce their numbers to an acceptable carrying capacity for the particular habitat.

In the natural area reserve systems, hunting will be used exclusively to bring animal numbers to acceptable levels, whether through public hunting or through contracting with organizations and clubs.

SECTION 2. Chapter 711, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"711-    Cruelty to game animals. A person commits the offense of cruelty to game animals if the person uses:

(1) Poison;

(2) Unattended snares;

(3) Unattended traps; or

(4) Traps that are primarily designed to injure,

for the purpose of capturing or killing game animals.

For the purposes of this section, an unattended trap or snare is one that is not checked at least once every twenty four hours after being set."

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

INTRODUCED BY:

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