At it’s December quarterly Commission Meeting, the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources introduced as a new business item a proposal to ban the use of cellular trail cameras and drones on all Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) and other public hunting areas.
The measure would also require all non-cellular trail cameras used on public hunting lands to be externally labeled with its owner’s customer identification number.
The ban on drones would include all uses including in the recovery of big game animals.
The KDFWR and its agents conducting research, communications, enforcement and other management activities would be exempt from both regulations.
Both of these proposals will be further researched and open to public comment at some point in the future. There is no date set yet to vote on these measures.
Here is the wording of the proposals as presented:
Prohibit use of aircraft (drones, helicopters, airplanes, etc.) for taking fish or
wildlife and use of drones/UAS on WMAs/public hunting areas
- Promulgate a new regulation to prohibit taking of fish/wildlife with aircraft
- Comport with federal law prohibiting take with aircraft (16 US Code § 742)
- Prohibit use in any aspect of take per wildlife definition in KRS 150.01
- Prohibit use of drones on any WMA or public hunting area statewide
- Exempt the department and its agents conducting research, communications and other authorized management activities
- Exempt use of aircraft for recovery of big game on private lands not open to public hunting
- Allow for authorized landowners/their agents engaged in lawful wildlife damage control activities, and commercial fishers for use in locating or removing Invasive Carp
Prohibit use of cellular or wireless trail cameras on WMAs/public hunting areas
- Promulgate a new regulation or amend 301 KAR 3:010 to prohibit use of wireless or cellular trail cameras
- Requirement for all trail cameras used on WMAs/public hunting areas to be externally labeled with its owners customer identification number
- Exempt the department and its agents conducting research, communications, enforcement, and other authorized management activities.
You can watch the full KDFWR Commission meeting in the video below: