Game commissioners consider changes for wildlife unit 2B
TribLIVE Sports Videos
HARRISBURG — It doesn't look as though the boundary lines for wildlife management unit 2B are going to change any time soon.
But the tools hunters can use to chase deer within them probably will.
Pennsylvania Game Commissioners held a work group session Monday in Harrisburg.
They once again took up the issue of whether to change the shape of any of the state's 22 wildlife management units.
When commissioners looked at them in June, they couldn't come to terms with agency staff on what, if any, changes to make.
Commissioner Bob Schlemmer of Export recommended then that unit 2B, which takes in most of Allegheny County and portions of Beaver, Butler, Washington and Westmoreland, be made smaller.
The reason is tied to where and how hunters hunt.
Hunters are limited to using shotguns in Allegheny County, but they can use centerfire rifles in the counties on the fringes, where most of the hunting pressure takes place, Schlemmer said Monday.
That's led to complaints and threats from landowners who want a break from shooting by them, he added.
“I've got a tremendous amount of people, in Westmoreland County especially, calling now saying they're going to post their land, just shut it down altogether,” Schlemmer said.
The solution he and the other commissioners appear to have settled on is to keep unit 2B as is but restrict hunters pursuing deer outside of Allegheny County in late season to using only flintlock rifles, archery gear and, perhaps, in-line muzzleloaders.
The latter are not allowed in the post-Christmas hunt and aren't appropriate for use statewide, said commission president Ralph Martone of New Castle.
But it might make sense to allow them in unit 2B — and 5C and 5D in the southeast — as a way of satisfying landowners and still giving hunters a tool to control deer.
It's likely the board will recommend restricting the use of rifles in the late season, Schlemmer said.
If the idea gets preliminary approval from the board, it would still need final approval in April.
It would then go into effect for the 2013-14 hunting season.
Bob Frye is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-838-5148.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.