Primitive Weapons Season in Georgia

October 12, 2012

PRIMITIVE WEAPONS DEER SEASON OPENS OCTOBER 13

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 2, 2012) – Muzzleloader.  Black Powder Gun.
These names apply to the type of firearm that can be used during the
week-long primitive weapons deer hunting season that begins Saturday,
Oct. 13.

During the 2011 primitive weapons season, more than 50,000 deer hunters
harvested slightly more than 14,000 deer using a primitive weapon.  This
harvest rate has increased slightly over the past few seasons, although
the number of hunters taking part in the season has remained relatively
stable.

“The primitive weapons deer season provides hunters an opportunity to
hunt with traditional or inline black powder firearms, or to continue
hunting with archery gear,” said John W. Bowers, assistant chief of
Game Management. “It is a chance to ‘get in the woods’ with a
different type of firearm prior to the opening of the more traditional
modern firearms deer season.”

More than one million acres of public hunting land is available to
hunters in Georgia, including more than 100 state-operated wildlife
management areas.  Many of these areas offer special hunts throughout
the season, including primitive weapons hunts. Dates and locations for
these hunts are available in the 2012-2013 Georgia Hunting Seasons and
Regulations guide.  An online copy of the Regulations guidebook and WMA
maps can be found at http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting .

Hunters may harvest up to 10 antlerless deer and no more than two
antlered deer (one of the two antlered deer must have a minimum of four
points, one inch or longer, on one side of the antlers).  During
primitive weapons season, hunters may use archery equipment,
muzzleloading shotguns (20 gauge or larger) and muzzleloading firearms
(.44 caliber or larger) to pursue whitetails.

All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of
daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during primitive weapons
season. Scopes and other optical sighting devices are legal for
muzzleloading firearms and archery equipment.

To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license,
big game license and a current deer harvest record. If hunting on a
wildlife management area, a WMA license also is required. To purchase a
license, visit http://www.georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes.

Sportsmen and women provide more than $30 million each year to fund
wildlife conservation in the state through license fees and self-imposed
excise taxes collected on the purchase of firearms, ammunition, archery
equipment and fishing equipment.

For more information on deer hunting seasons and regulations, visit
http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/regulations .

###

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SPECIAL FIREARMS OPPORTUNITY FOR YOUTH DURING PRIMITIVE WEAPONS SEASON

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 2, 2012) – Being young has its advantages!
During the statewide primitive weapons deer season, October 13-19, 2012,
children under 16 years of age may hunt deer with any legal deer
firearm.  Additionally, youth under 16 years of age may hunt deer with
any legal deer firearm during any wildlife management area primitive
weapons hunts.

“This special firearms opportunity is a fantastic time to get a kid
involved in hunting,” said John W. Bowers, assistant chief of Game
Management.  “It is one of many unique opportunities we promote to
encourage the next generation to experience the hunting tradition and
learn much about themselves.”

Hunters under age 16 do not need a hunting license.  However, a deer
harvest record is required.   A deer harvest record is free and can be
found at http://www.georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes.  Adults
accompanying youth must have all appropriate licenses and use seasonally
appropriate hunting equipment.

For more information, visit http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/regulations
and view the online copy of the 2012-2013 Hunting Regulations guidebook.

###

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SAFETY CRITICAL DURING PRIMITIVE WEAPONS SEASON

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 2, 2012) – Hunters should be alert and aware
during primitive weapons deer hunting season, Oct. 13-19, as
muzzleloaders require specific safety precautions, according to the
Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division.

“Hunters using muzzleloading guns should know that they have specific
safety precautions,” says Walter Lane, Wildlife Resources Division
hunter development program manager. “Be familiar with the difference
between these types of firearms and modern firearms before heading to
the woods.”

Following are recommendations to ensure a safe experience:

●    Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.

●    Never rely solely on the gun’s “safety” mechanism.

●    Handle every gun as if it was loaded.

●    Do not use alcohol or drugs while handling a firearm.

●    Never smoke in the proximity of a muzzleloader.

●    Use an intermediate device, such as a measure, to pour powder
into a barrel.

●    Keep flask and powder containers away from flames and sparks to
prevent an accidental explosion.

●    Use only powders specific to each muzzleloader and recommended
by that firearms manufacturer.

●    Place percussion cap on nipple only when ready to shoot.

●    The gun is safely unloaded only after removing the bullet,
powder and percussion cap. If using a flintlock muzzleloader, remove the
bullet and powder, and un-prime the flash pan.

●    Use the recommended loading materials, the correct powder
charge, the right diameter and weight bullet and the correct lead
material.

●    Never use plastic (poly) patches. These are different from
sabots.

●    Treat a misfire as though the gun could fire at any moment.

●    Make sure the gun is unloaded before attempting to clean it.

●    Make sure the projectile is firmly seated on the powder before
capping and firing.

●    Never blow down the barrel of a muzzleloader to clear or
extinguish sparks.

All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of
daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during the primitive weapons
season.

To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license,
big game license and a current deer harvest record. If hunting on a
wildlife management area, a WMA license also is required. To purchase a
license, visit http://www.georgiawildlife.com/licenses-permits-passes.

For more information on muzzleloader safety, visit
http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/education .

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