Hunters who harvest a deer in Dearborn County north of State Road 48 between now and Nov. 27 must take their deer to a DNR check station to be sampled for bovine tuberculosis (bTB). The DNR has established a bTB surveillance zone in Dearborn County north of S.R. 48 because the disease has been detected in a wild deer in neighboring Franklin County.

The following check stations will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week until Nov. 27.

• 3-D Mart at BP Gas Station, 27968 State Road 1, West Harrison.

• Gravel lot behind FCN Bank, 226 N. Meridian St., Sunman, Ripley County.

• Orscheln Farm & Home, 181 South Tanners Creek Drive, Lawrenceburg.

Having deer sampled for Bovine TB is voluntary throughout the season for deer harvested in Franklin County and Fayette County south of S.R. 44 at the check stations listed above; however, the DNR strongly encourages it.

Following firearms opening weekend, heads from deer harvested in Franklin and south Fayette counties may be dropped off at any of the designated drop-off locations for bovine TB sampling. A complete list of drop-off locations is at wildlife.IN.gov/9320.htm.

Hunters who submit a buck at least two years old for bovine TB sampling from Franklin County, Fayette County south of S.R. 44, or Dearborn County north of S.R. 48 will be eligible to receive an authorization to take an additional buck in the designated areas only. The buck must first be inspected by a DNR biologist at a DNR check station. The second buck will also need to be submitted for bovine TB sampling.

Bovine TB test results for individual deer and regular updates on the surveillance can be found at wildlife.IN.gov/9320.htm. For more information, visit wildlife.IN.gov/9320.htm.

Indiana Constitution Now Includes The Right To Hunt & Fish

On Election Day, Indiana voters overwhelmingly approved an amendment to our State’s Constitution. According to Ballotpedia with 99.9 percent of precincts reported, the constitutional amendment showed 2,390,883 votes with 82.23% of Indiana voters in favor. The amendment ensures the rights of the citizens of Indiana to hunt and fish. Section 39 to Article I of the Indiana Constitution is worded: “The right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife is a valued part of Indiana’s heritage; and shall be forever preserved for the public good.

“The people have a right, which includes the right to use traditional methods, to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife, subject only to the laws prescribed by the General Assembly and rules prescribed by virtue of the authority of the General Assembly to: promote wildlife conservation and management; and preserve the future of hunting and fishing.

“Hunting and fishing shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife.

“This section shall not be construed to limit the application of any provision of law relating to trespass or property rights.”

The following officials sponsored the amendment in the Indiana Legislature: Sen. Brent Steele (R-44), Sen. James Buck (R-21), Sen. Carlin Yoder (R-12), Sen. Michael Young (R-35), Sen. Dennis Kruse (R-14), Sen. Jim Tomes (R-49), Rep. Sean Eberhart (R-57) and Rep. Heath VanNatter (R-38)

Other officials supporting the amendment include our own Governor Mike Pence.

Now the inalienable right is acknowledged and added to the constitution, it creates a barrier to the legislative onslaught being waged by groups founded on an anti-hunting, anti-fishing and animal rights philosophy, and helps guarantee state-wide management based on sound biological concepts.

The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, which supported the movement to constitutionalize a right to hunt and fish, contends: “Hunting and fishing are integral parts of the culture and economy of Indiana, as it is one of the top ten deer-hunting states in the country and has more than 450 natural lakes and 21,000 miles of fishable streams, bringing in $923 million annually in revenue and supporting 14,058 jobs.”

Indiana now joins 23 other states having a constitutional amendment or statutory laws in place to protect the rights of their citizens to hunt and fish. Vermont incorporated the rights in their constitution in 1777 and California enacted legislation in 1910. Other states with constitutional rights to hunting and fishing include; Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

Hiring Indiana Conservation Officers

The Law Enforcement Division and the Indiana Conservation Officers are currently searching for candidates interested in working as a specialized law enforcement officer. Successful candidates are willing to participate in a hiring process consisting of written testing, physical agility testing, background investigation, formal interview, psychological testing, polygraph, Core Values training, Indiana Law Enforcement Academy and essentials training.

The job of an Indiana Conservation Officer is complex and crosses quickly from natural resource enforcement response and education to criminal and traffic law enforcement. Successful candidates must be willing to work in the environment under extreme conditions and learn to operate a variety of patrol vehicles.

The minimum requirements needed to begin the hiring process are being at least 21 years of age before the graduation date of the fall 2017 Law Enforcement Academy (November 2017), possess an Associate Degree or 60 credit hours completed toward a Bachelor Degree from an accredited college or university or 4 years active and concurrent military service.

All interested candidates must pass an on-line pre-screening test on or before Nov. 30, 2016 to be considered for the hiring process. The website may be accessed at DNRLAW.in.gov and by clicking “Becoming an Indiana Conservation Officer.”

“If you believe that you have the qualities that we are looking for we want to hear from you,” said Danny L. East, DNR Law Enforcement Director. “The profession of Conservation Law Enforcement is one of challenge, hard work and discipline and we are searching for candidates who possess those qualities.”

‘till next time… Jack

Readers with questions or comments may contact Jack Spaulding by e-mail at jackspaulding@hughes.net or by writing to him in care of this publication.

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