The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) has revised its archery regulation for the 2016-17 hunting season. The changes reflect recent advancements in archery technology and clarify what qualifies as legal archery equipment when hunting deer or turkey. The new regulation will be in effect this fall.
One of the most significant changes is the minimum draw weight has been reduced from 35 to 30 pounds.
“The lighter draw weight will provide more hunting opportunities for those who have difficulty drawing a bow in that 35 pound class,” said Marisa Futral, ADCNR Hunter Education Coordinator. “This will make it easier for women and children to enter the world of bowhunting, while still producing sufficient arrow speed and kinetic energy to ethically harvest an animal.”
Additionally, there is no longer a restriction on arrow length, broadhead weight or blade thickness. However, arrows must have a broadhead with at least two sharpened edges and a minimum cutting diameter of seven-eighths of an inch.
Outdated language related to crossbows was also removed from the previous regulation. The revised regulation states that crossbows must be equipped with a working safety and have a minimum peak tension of 85 pounds at normal draw.
“These changes should help those new to bowhunting feel more confident they are hunting with legal equipment while in the field,” Futral said.
Deer archery season opens on October 15 (buck only for the first 10 days of bow season in Zone B). ADCNR reminds hunters to be safe while hunting this fall. Remember to always wear a safety harness when hunting from an elevated position. Tree stand accidents remain Alabama’s most common hunting accident. Hunters should be connected to the tree from the moment their feet leave the ground until they return back to the ground safely.
Also new for the 2016-17 hunting season, mandatory reporting of all deer and turkey harvests through Alabama’s Game Check system will be in effect. Hunters will have 48 hours to report their harvest through a mobile app, online at www.outdooralabama.com, or by phone at 1-800-888-7690.
For more information about the new archery regulation, Game Check, hunter safety and more, visit www.outdooralabama.com/hunting.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through four divisions: Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com.