KEY: wildlife, furbearers, game laws, wildlife law
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: November 10, 2015
Notice of Continuation: July 13, 2015
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted law: 23-14-18; 23-14-19; 23-13-17
(1) Under authority of Sections 23-14-18 and 23-14-19, the Wildlife Board has established this rule for taking furbearers.
(2) Specific dates, areas, number of permits, limits, and other administrative details which may change annually are published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(1) Terms used in this rule are defined in Section 23-13-2.
(2) In addition:
(a) "Artificial cubby set" means any artificially manufactured container with an opening on one end that houses a trapping device. Bait must be placed inside the artificial cubby set at least eight inches from the opening. Artificial cubby sets must be placed with the top of the opening even with or below the bottom of the bait so that the bait is not visible from above.
(b) "Bait" means any lure containing animal parts larger than one cubic inch, or eight cubic inches if used in an artificial cubby set, with the exception of white-bleached bones with no hide or flesh attached.
(c) "Exposed bait" means bait which is visible from any angle, except when used in an artificial cubby set.
(d) "Fur dealer" means any individual engaged in, wholly or in part, the business of buying, selling, or trading skins or pelts of furbearers within Utah.
(e) "Fur dealer's agent" means any person who is employed by a resident or nonresident fur dealer as a buyer.
(f) "Green pelt" means the untanned hide or skin of any furbearer.
(g) "Pursue" means to chase, tree, corner, or hold a furbearer at bay.
(h) "Scent" means any lure composed of material of less than one cubic inch that has a smell intended to attract animals.
(1) A person who has a valid, current furbearer license may take furbearers during the established furbearer seasons published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(2) A person who has a valid, current furbearer license and valid bobcat permits may take bobcat during the established bobcat season published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(3) A person who has a valid, current furbearer license and valid marten trapping permit may take marten during the established marten season published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(4) Any license, permit, or tag that is mutilated or otherwise made illegible is invalid and may not be used for taking or possessing furbearers.
(1) Bobcat permits can only be obtained and are only valid with a valid, current furbearer license.
(2) A person may obtain up to the number of bobcat permits authorized each year by the Wildlife Board. Permit numbers shall be published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(3) Bobcat permits will be available during the dates published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers and may be obtained by submitting an application through the division's Internet address.
(4) Bobcat permits are valid for the entire bobcat season.
(1) The pelt or unskinned carcass of any bobcat must be tagged in accordance with Section 23-20-30.
(2) The tag must remain with the pelt or unskinned carcass until a permanent tag has been affixed.
(3) Possession of an untagged green pelt or unskinned carcass is prima facie evidence of unlawful taking and possession.
(4) The lower jaw of each bobcat taken must be removed and tagged with the numbered jaw tag corresponding to the number of the temporary possession tag affixed to the hide.
(1) A person may not trap marten or have marten in possession without having a valid, current furbearer license and a marten trapping permit in possession.
(2) Marten trapping permits are available free of charge from any division office.
(3)(a) Applications for marten permits must contain the applicant's full name, mailing address, phone number, and valid, current furbearer license number.
(b) Permit applications are accepted by mail or in person at any regional division office.
(1) A person may not:
(a) possess a green pelt or unskinned carcass from a bobcat or marten that does not have a permanent tag affixed after the first Friday in March ;
(b) possess a green pelt or the unskinned carcass of a bobcat with an affixed temporary bobcat possession tag issued to another person, except as provided in Subsections (5) and (6); or
(b) buy, sell, trade, or barter a green pelt from a bobcat or marten that does not have a permanent tag affixed.
(2) Bobcat and marten pelts must be delivered to a division representative to have a permanent tag affixed and to surrender the lower jaw.
(3) Bobcat and marten pelts may be delivered to the following division offices, by appointment only, during the dates published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers:
(a) Cedar City - Regional Office;
(b) Ogden - Regional Office;
(c) Price - Regional Office;
(d) Salt Lake City - Salt Lake Office;
(e) Springville - Regional Office; and
(f) Vernal - Regional Office.
(4) There is no fee for permanent tags.
(5) Bobcat and marten which have been legally taken may be transported from an individual's place of residence by an individual other than the fur harvester to have the permanent tag affixed; bobcats must be tagged with a temporary possession tag and accompanied by a valid furbearer license belonging to the fur harvester.
(6) Any individual transporting a bobcat or marten for another person must have written authorization stating the following:
(a) date of kill;
(b) location of kill;
(c) species and sex of animal being transported;
(d) origin and destination of such transportation;
(e) the name, address, signature and furbearer license number of the fur harvester;
(f) the name of the individual transporting the bobcat or marten; and
(g) the fur harvester's marten permit number if marten is being transported.
(7) Green pelts of bobcats and marten legally taken from outside the state may not be possessed, bought, sold, traded, or bartered in Utah unless a permanent tag has been affixed or the pelts are accompanied by a shipping permit issued by the wildlife agency of the state where the animal was taken.
(8)(a) Fur harvesters taking marten are requested to present the entire skinned carcass intact, including the lower jaw, to the division in good condition when the pelt is presented for tagging.
(b) "Good condition" means the carcass is fresh or frozen and securely wrapped to prevent decomposition so that the tissue remains suitable for lab analysis.
A person may purchase a license by mail by sending the following information to a division office: full name, complete mailing address, phone number, date of birth, weight, height, sex, color of hair and eyes, Social Security number, driver license number (if available), proof of furharvester education certification, and fees.
(1) For the purposes of this section, "owner" means the person who has been issued a trap registration number, which is permanently marked or affixed to the trapping device.
(2) Each trapping device used to take furbearers must be permanently marked or tagged with the trap registered number of the owner.
(3) No more than one trap registration number may be on a trapping device.
(4) Trap registration numbers must be legible.
(5) Trap registration numbers are permanent and may be obtained by mail or in person from any division office.
(6) Applicants must include their full name, including middle initial, and complete home address.
(7) A registration fee of $10 must accompany the request. This fee is payable only once.
(8) Each individual is issued only one trap registration number.
(9) Any person who has obtained a trap registration number must notify the division within 30 days of any change in address or the theft of traps.
(1) All long spring, jump, or coil spring traps must have spacers on the jaws which leave an opening of at least 3/16 of an inch when the jaws are closed, except;
(a) rubber-padded jaw traps,
(b) traps with jaw spreads less than 4.25 inches, and
(c) traps that are not completely submerged under water when set.
(2) All cable devices (i.e snares), except those set in water or with a loop size less than 3 inches in diameter, must be equipped with a breakaway lock device that will release when any force greater than 300 lbs. is applied to the loop. Breakaway cable devices must be fastened to an immovable object solidly secured to the ground. The use of drags is prohibited.
(3) On the middle section of the Provo River, between Jordanelle Dam and Deer Creek Reservoir, the Green River, between Flaming Gorge Dam and the Utah Colorado state line; the Colorado River, between the Utah Colorado state line and Lake Powell; and the Escalante River, between Escalante and Lake Powell, trapping within 100 yards of either side of these rivers, including their tributaries from the confluences upstream ½ mile, is restricted to the following devices:
(a) Nonlethal-set foot hold traps with a jaw spread less than 5 1/8 inches, and nonlethal-set padded foot hold traps. Drowning sets with these traps are prohibited.
(b) Body-gripping, killing-type traps with body-gripping area less than 30 square inches (i.e., 110 Conibear).
(c) Nonlethal dry land cable devices equipped with a stop-lock device that prevents it from closing to less than a six-inch diameter.
(d) Size 330, body-gripping, killing-type traps (i.e. Conibear) modified by replacing the standard V-trigger assembly with one top side parallel trigger assembly, with the trigger placed within one inch of the side, or butted against the vertical turn in the Canadian bend.
(4) A person may not disturb or remove any trapping device, except:
(a) a person who possesses a valid, current furbearer license, the appropriate permits or tags, and who has been issued a trapper registration number, which is permanently marked or affixed to the trapping device; or
(b) peace officers in the performance of their duties; or
(c) as provided in Subsection (6).
(5) A person may not kill or remove wildlife caught in any trapping device, except:
(b) as provided in Subsection (6).
(6) For the purposes of this section, "owner" means the person who has been issued a trap registration number, which is permanently marked or affixed to the trapping device.
(7) A person, other than the owner, may possess, disturb or remove a trapping device; or possess, kill or remove wildlife caught in a trapping device provided:
(a) the person possesses a valid, current furbearer license, the appropriate permits or tags; and
(b) has obtained written authorization from the owner of the trapping device stating the following:
(i) date written authorization was obtained;
(ii) name and address of the owner;
(iii) owner's trap registration number;
(iv) the name of the individual being given authorization;
(v) signature of owner.
(8) The owner of any trapping device, providing written authorization to another person under Subsection (6), shall be strictly liable for any violations of this guidebook resulting from the use of the trapping device by the authorized person.
(9) The owner of any trapping device, providing written authorization to another person under Subsection (6), must keep a record of all persons obtaining written authorization and furnish a copy of the record upon request from a conservation officer.
(10)(a) A person may not set any trap or trapping device on posted private property without the landowner's permission.
(b) Any trap or trapping device set on posted property without the owner's permission may be sprung by the landowner.
(c) Wildlife officers should be informed as soon as possible of any illegally set traps or trapping devices.
(11) Peace officers in the performance of their duties may seize all traps, trapping devices, and wildlife used or held in violation of this rule.
(12) A person may not possess any trapping device that is not permanently marked or tagged with that person's registered trap number while engaged in taking wildlife.
(13) All traps and trapping devices must be checked and animals removed at least once every 48 hours, except;
(a) killing traps striking dorso-ventrally,
(b) drowning sets, and
(c) lethal cable devices that are set to capture on the neck, that have a nonrelaxing lock, without a stop, and are anchored to an immoveable object; which must be checked every 96 hours.
(14) A person may not transport or possess live protected wildlife. Any animal found in a trap or trapping device must be killed or released immediately by the trapper.
(1) A person may not use any protected wildlife or their parts, except for white-bleached bones with no hide or flesh attached, as bait or scent; however, parts of legally taken furbearers and nonprotected wildlife may be used as bait.
(2) Traps or trapping devices may not be set within 30 feet of any exposed bait.
(3) A person using bait is responsible if it becomes exposed for any reason.
(4) White-bleached bones with no hide or flesh attached may be set within 30 feet of traps.
(1)(a) Any bear, bobcat, cougar, marten, otter, wolverine, any furbearer trapped out of season, or other protected wildlife accidentally caught in a trap must be released unharmed.
(b) Written permission must be obtained from a division representative to remove the carcass of any of these species from a trap.
(c) The carcass remains the property of the state and must be turned over to the division.
(2) All incidents of accidental trapping of any of these animals must be reported to the division within 48 hours.
(3) Black-footed ferret, lynx and wolf are protected species under the Endangered Species Act. Accidental trapping or capture of these species must be reported to the division within 48 hours.
(1) Furbearers, except bobcats and marten, may be taken by any means, excluding explosives and poisons, or as otherwise provided in Section 23-13-17.
(2) Bobcats may be taken only by shooting, trapping, or with the aid of dogs as provided in Section R657-11-26.
(3) Marten may be taken only with an elevated, covered set in which the maximum trap size shall not exceed 1 1/2 foothold or 160 Conibear.
(4) Taking furbearers by shooting or with the aid of dogs is restricted to one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset, except as provided in Section 23-13-17.
(5) A person may not take any wildlife from an airplane or any other airborne vehicle or device or any motorized terrestrial or aquatic vehicle, including snowmobiles and other recreational vehicles.
(1) Except as provided in Subsection (3):
(a) a person may not use or cast the rays of any spotlight, headlight, or other artificial light to locate protected wildlife while having in possession a firearm or other weapon or device that could be used to take or injure protected wildlife; and
(b) the use of a spotlight or other artificial light in a field, woodland, or forest where protected wildlife are generally found is prima facie evidence of attempting to locate protected wildlife.
(2) The provisions of this section do not apply to:
(a) the use of the headlights of a motor vehicle or other artificial light in a usual manner where there is no attempt or intent to locate protected wildlife; or
(b) a person licensed to carry a concealed weapon in accordance with Title 53, Chapter 5, Part 7 of the Utah Code, provided the person is not utilizing the concealed weapon to hunt or take wildlife.
(3) The provisions of this section do not apply to the use of an artificial light when used by a trapper to illuminate his path and trap sites for the purpose of conducting the required trap checks, provided that:
(a) any artificial light must be carried by the trapper;
(b) a motor vehicle headlight or light attached to or powered by a motor vehicle may not be used; and
(c) while checking traps with the use of an artificial light, the trapper may not occupy or operate any motor vehicle.
(4) Spotlighting may be used to hunt coyote, red fox, striped skunk, or raccoon where allowed by a county ordinance enacted pursuant to Section 23-13-17.
(5) The ordinance shall provide that:
(a) any artificial light used to spotlight coyote, red fox, striped skunk, or raccoon must be carried by the hunter;
(b) a motor vehicle headlight or light attached to or powered by a motor vehicle may not be used to spotlight the animal; and
(c) while hunting with the use of an artificial light, the hunter may not occupy or operate any motor vehicle.
(6) For purposes of the county ordinance, "motor vehicle" shall have the meaning as defined in Section 41-6-1.
(7) The ordinance may specify:
(a) the time of day and seasons when spotlighting is permitted;
(b) areas closed or open to spotlighting within the unincorporated area of the county;
(c) safety zones within which spotlighting is prohibited;
(d) the weapons permitted; and
(e) penalties for violation of the ordinance.
(8)(a) A county may restrict the number of hunters engaging in spotlighting by requiring a permit to spotlight and issuing a limited number of permits.
(b) A fee may be charged for a spotlighting permit.
(9) A county may require hunters to notify the county sheriff of the time and place they will be engaged in spotlighting.
(10) The requirement that a county ordinance must be enacted before a person may use spotlighting to hunt coyote, red fox, striped skunk, or raccoon does not apply to:
(a) a person or his agent who is lawfully acting to protect his crops or domestic animals from predation by those animals; or
(b) a wildlife service's agent acting in his official capacity under a memorandum of agreement with the division.
(1) Dogs may be used to take furbearers only from one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset and only during the prescribed open seasons.
(2) The owner and handler of dogs used to take or pursue a furbearer must have a valid, current furbearer license in possession while engaged in taking furbearers.
(3) When dogs are used in the pursuit of furbearers, the licensed hunter intending to take the furbearer must be present when the dogs are released and must continuously participate in the hunt thereafter until the hunt is completed.
(1) Taking any wildlife is prohibited within the boundaries of all state park areas except those designated by the Division of Parks and Recreation in Section R651-614-4.
(2) Hunting with a rifle, handgun, or muzzleloader on park areas designated open is prohibited within one mile of all park facilities including buildings, camp or picnic sites, overlooks, golf courses, boat ramps, and developed beaches.
(3) Hunting with shotguns, crossbows, and archery equipment is prohibited within one quarter mile of the above stated areas.
(1)(a) A person who has obtained the appropriate license and permit may transport green pelts of furbearers. Additional restrictions apply for taking bobcat and marten as provided in Section R657-11-6.
(b) A registered Utah fur dealer or that person's agent may transport or ship green pelts of furbearers within Utah.
(2) A furbearer license is not required to transport red fox or striped skunk.
(1) A person may not export or ship the green pelt of any furbearer from Utah without first obtaining a valid shipping permit from a division representative.
(2) A furbearer license is not required to export red fox or striped skunk from Utah.
(1) A person with a valid furbearer license may sell, offer for sale, barter, or exchange only those species that person is licensed to take, and which were legally taken.
(2) Any person who has obtained a valid fur dealer or fur dealer's agent certificate of registration may engage in, wholly or in part, the business of buying, selling, or trading green pelts or parts of furbearers within Utah.
(3) Fur dealers or their agents and taxidermists must keep records of all transactions dealing with green pelts of furbearers.
(4) Records must state the following:
(a) the transaction date; and
(b) the name, address, license number, and tag number of each seller.
(5) A receipt containing the information specified in Subsection (4) must be issued whenever the ownership of a pelt changes.
(6)(a) A person may possess furbearers and tanned hides legally acquired without possessing a license, provided proof of legal ownership or possession can be furnished.
(b) A furbearer license is not required to sell or possess red fox or striped skunk or their parts.
(1) A person may not waste or permit to be wasted or spoiled any protected wildlife or their parts as provided in Section 23-20-8.
(2) The skinned carcass of a furbearer may be left in the field and does not constitute waste of wildlife.
(1) Badger, weasel, and spotted skunk may be taken anytime without a license when creating a nuisance or causing damage, provided the animal or its parts are not sold or traded.
(2) Red fox and striped skunk may be taken any time without a license.
(1) Depredating bobcats may be taken at any time by duly appointed animal damage control agents, supervised by the animal damage control program, while acting in the performance of their assigned duties and in accordance with procedures approved by the division.
(2) A livestock owner or his employee, on a regular payroll and not hired specifically to take furbearers, may take bobcats that are molesting livestock.
(3) Any bobcat taken by a livestock owner or his employee must be surrendered to the division within 72 hours.
(1) Beaver doing damage or other nuisance behaviors may be taken or removed during open and closed seasons with either a valid furbearer license or a nuisance permit.
(2) A nuisance permit to remove beaver must first be obtained from a division office or conservation officer.
Each permittee who is contacted for a survey about their furbearer harvesting experience should participate in the survey regardless of success. Participation in the survey helps the division evaluate population trends, harvest success and collect other valuable information.
(1)(a) A person may not take black-footed ferret, fisher, lynx, otter, wolf, or wolverine.
(b) Accidental trapping or capture of any of these species must be reported to the division within 48 hours.
Season dates, bag limits, and areas with special restrictions are published annually in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers.
(1)(a) Trapping on state waterfowl management areas is a property management tool used to protect waterfowl populations and infrastructure improvements found on the property.
(b) The authorization to trap on state waterfowl management areas shall be provided through a certificate of registration that is awarded to an individual or individuals through a competitive proposal solicitation process.
(c) On or before October 1 of each year, the division shall publicly notice which state waterfowl management areas are available for proposal by publishing the notice on its website and by publishing a notice in a newspaper of general circulation at least once a week for two consecutive weeks.
(d) The notification and advertising shall include:
(i) the deadline for applying for the certificate of registration;
(ii) a general description of the trapping area authorized under the certificate of registration;
(iii) the desired form of compensation to the division, whether monetary, in-kind, or both; (iv) the division's management objectives for the state waterfowl management area; and (v) any special considerations or limitations the division will require of the trapper or trappers while they are on the state waterfowl management area.
(2)(a) Applications must include the following:
(i) a nonrefundable application fee;
(ii) the name of the state waterfowl management area being applied for;
(iii) a description of the applicant's familiarity with the state waterfowl management area being applied for;
(iv) a list of the individuals who will conduct trapping activities under the certificate of registration;
(v) a description of each individual's experience trapping and their ability to utilize removal of targeted species to protect waterfowl populations and infrastructure found at state waterfowl management areas;
(vi) the projected number of animals, specifically muskrat, that may be removed via trapping;
(vii) how the proposal accomplishes the identified management objectives for the waterfowl management area;
(viii) how the proposal conforms with any special considerations or limitations identified by the division in its public notice; and
(viii) a bid amount to be paid to the Division in exchange for the authorization to trap on the state waterfowl management area.
(c) All individuals listed on the application who will conduct trapping activities under the certificate of registration must meet all age requirements, proof of hunter education and furharvester requirements, and youth restrictions as provided in Utah Code 23-19-24, 23-19-11 and 23-20-20.
(d) The bid amount described in Subsection (vi) above may include non-monetary, in-kind contributions.
(3)(a) Late or incomplete applications may be rejected.
(b) A separate application must be submitted for each state waterfowl management area an individual wishes to trap on.
(c) In the event that there is more than one application for a certain state waterfowl management area, the division will analyze each application and select a successful applicant or applicants whose proposal best accomplishes the division objectives identified in the public notice.
(4) The selected applicant will be issued a certificate of registration authorizing trapping activities on the state waterfowl management area for a period of up to two years.
(5) A certificate of registration issued pursuant to this Part may be revoked, suspended, or terminated consistent with the terms of Utah Code 23-19-9 and Utah Admin. Code R657-26.
(1) Upon verified payment of trapping fees, permits will be mailed to successful applicants are granted trapping rights for management areas.
(2) If a successful applicant fails to make full payment within 14 days of the results posting date, an alternate trapper will be selected.
(3) Permits are not valid until signed by the superintendent in charge of the area to be trapped.
Vehicle travel is restricted to developed roads. However, written permission for other travel may be obtained from the waterfowl management area superintendent.
On waterfowl management areas traps may be checked only between one-half hour before official sunrise to one-half hour after official sunset.
(1) All trappers are directly responsible to the waterfowl management area superintendent.
(2) Violation of management or trapping rules, including failure to return a trapping permit within five days of cessation of trapping activities, or failure to properly trap an area, as determined and recommended by the superintendent, may be cause for cancellation of trapping privileges, existing and future, on all waterfowl management areas.
Davis County - Trapping is allowed only on the dates published in the guidebook of the Wildlife Board for taking furbearers, on those lands administered by the state lying along the eastern shore of the Great Salt Lake, commonly known as the Layton-Kaysville marshes. In addition, there may be a portion of the above stated area that is closed to trapping. This area will be posted and marked.
(1) A person may not use motor vehicles on division-owned wildlife management areas closed to motor vehicle use without first obtaining written authorization from the appropriate division regional office.
(2) For purposes of coyote trapping, the division may, in its sole discretion, authorize limited motor vehicle access to its wildlife management areas closed to such use provided the motor vehicle access will not interfere with wildlife or wildlife habitat.
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