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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

HF 680

1st Engrossment - 91st Legislature (2019 - 2020) Posted on 03/21/2019 05:24pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Bill Text Versions

Engrossments
Introduction Posted on 02/04/2019
1st Engrossment Posted on 03/11/2019

Current Version - 1st Engrossment

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A bill for an act
relating to game and fish; allowing use of leashed dogs to track big game under
certain conditions; modifying use of artificial lights; providing criminal penalties;
amending Minnesota Statutes 2018, sections 97A.321, subdivision 1; 97B.011;
97B.081, subdivision 3; 97B.205; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota
Statutes, chapter 97B.

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

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 97A.321, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Owner responsibility; penalty amount.

new text begin(a) new text endThe owner of a dog that
pursues but does not kill or mortally wound a big game animal is subject to a civil penalty
of $100 for each violation. The owner of a dog that kills or mortally wounds a big game
animal is subject to a civil penalty of $500 for each violation.

new text begin (b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a person using a dog in compliance with section
97B.207.
new text end

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 97B.011, is amended to read:


97B.011 DOGS PURSUING BIG GAME.

new text begin (a) new text endA person who observes a dog wounding, killing, or pursuing in a manner that
endangers big game may kill the dog:

(1) at any time, if the person is a peace officer or conservation officer; or

(2) between January 1 and July 14, if the person is not a peace officer or conservation
officer and the discharge of firearms is allowed.

The officer or person is not liable for damages for killing the dog.

new text begin (b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a dog used in compliance with section 97B.207.
new text end

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 97B.081, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Exceptions.

(a) It is not a violation of this section for a person to:

(1) cast the rays of a spotlight, headlight, or other artificial light to take raccoons
according to section 97B.621, subdivision 3, or tend traps according to section 97B.931;

(2) hunt fox or coyote from January 1 to March 15 while using a handheld artificial
light, provided that the person is:

(i) on foot;

(ii) using a shotgun;

(iii) not within a public road right-of-way;

(iv) using a handheld or electronic calling device; and

(v) not within 200 feet of a motor vehicle; or

(3) cast the rays of a handheld artificial light to retrieve wounded or dead big game
animals, provided that the person is:

(i) on foot; and

(ii) not in possession of a firearm or bow.

(b) It is not a violation of subdivision 2 for a person to cast the rays of a spotlight,
headlight, or other artificial light to:

(1) carry out any agricultural, safety, emergency response, normal vehicle operation, or
occupation-related activities that do not involve taking wild animals; or

(2) carry out outdoor recreation as defined in section 97B.001 that is not related to
spotting, locating, or taking a wild animal.

(c) Except as otherwise provided by the game and fish laws, it is not a violation of this
section for a person to use an electronic range finder device from one-half hour before
sunrise until one-half hour after sunset while lawfully hunting wild animals.

(d) It is not a violation of this section for a licensed bear hunter to cast the rays of a
handheld artificial light to track or retrieve a wounded or dead bear while possessing a
firearmdeleted text begin, provided thatdeleted text endnew text begin:
new text end

new text begin (1) ifnew text end the person:

deleted text begin (1)deleted text endnew text begin (i)new text end has the person's valid bear-hunting license in possession;

deleted text begin (2)deleted text endnew text begin (ii)new text end is on foot; and

deleted text begin (3)deleted text endnew text begin (iii)new text end is following the blood trail of a bear that was shot during legal shooting hoursnew text begin;
or
new text end

new text begin (2) as provided in section 97B.207new text end.

new text begin (e) It is not a violation of this section for a licensed deer hunter to cast the rays of a
handheld artificial light to track or retrieve a wounded deer as provided in section 97B.207.
new text end

new text begin (f) For purposes of this subdivision, "handheld artificial light" means an artificial light
that is carried in the hand or attached to the person.
new text end

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 97B.205, is amended to read:


97B.205 deleted text beginUSE OFdeleted text endnew text begin USINGnew text end DOGS AND HORSES TO TAKE BIG GAME
PROHIBITED.

A person may not use a dog or horse to take big gamenew text begin, except as provided under section
97B.207
new text end.

Sec. 5.

new text begin [97B.207] USING DOGS TO LOCATE WOUNDED DEER OR BEAR.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Using dogs allowed. new text end

new text begin A person may use a dog to locate and retrieve a
wounded deer or bear only as provided in this section.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Requirements for hunters and handlers. new text end

new text begin (a) A person attempting to locate
and retrieve a wounded deer or bear using a dog must have a valid license to take the deer
or bear and have the license in possession. If the person is a dog handler that does not have
a valid hunting license, the person must be accompanied by a licensed hunter with the license
in possession.
new text end

new text begin (b) The licensed hunter, and any accompanying dog handler, must be on foot and must
wear blaze orange or blaze pink as provided in section 97B.071, paragraph (a).
new text end

new text begin (c) Any light used must be a handheld artificial light, as defined under section 97B.081,
subdivision 3, paragraph (f).
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Requirements for dogs. new text end

new text begin (a) A dog used to locate a wounded deer or bear must
be accompanied by a licensed hunter and any dog handler until the wounded deer or bear
is located. The dog must be leashed and the licensed hunter or dog handler must be in
physical control of the leash at all times. The leash must not exceed 30 feet in length.
new text end

new text begin (b) The dog owner's information, including the owner's name and telephone number,
must be on the dog while the dog is used to locate a wounded deer or bear under this section.
new text end

new text begin (c) The licensed hunter and any accompanying dog handler are jointly and severally
responsible for a dog under this section. A violation of this subdivision is a misdemeanor
under section 97A.301, subdivision 1, and section 97A.421 applies.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Additional requirements. new text end

new text begin (a) The trespass provisions in section 97B.001 apply
to activities under this section, including all requirements to gain permission to enter private
or public property.
new text end

new text begin (b) Activities under this section may occur during legal shooting hours or outside legal
shooting hours of the open season for the location and species. Any activity occurring under
this section outside the open season for the location and species must be reported to the
local conservation officer before locating or retrieving the wounded deer or bear.
new text end