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Reasons to Lift the Bans on Sunday Hunting

In 19th Century America, "blue laws" restricted many activities on Sunday, including Hunting.

Other outdoor activities are allowed on Sunday, including those that take place on public and private property, such as fishing, hiking and golf. Restrictions on Sunday hunting effectively treat hunters as second-class citizens and tacitly endorse the view of animal extremists that there is something wrong with hunting. Such a view ignores the fact that hunting is part of America’s heritage and hunters contribute billions of dollars to wildlife and conservation programs, through license fees and revenues generated through purchases of firearms, ammunition and archery equipment.

Restrictions on Sunday hunting effectively treat hunters as second-class citizens and tacitly endorse the view of animal extremists that there is something wrong with hunting.

Laws prohibiting hunting on Sundays are among the last of America's "blue laws," and for many reasons should be repealed.

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Reasons to Lift the Bans on Sunday Hunting

States that have recently repealed Sunday hunting prohibitions have had no adverse impact on game populations. 

In fact, states that allow hunting on Sunday have the most abundant game populations. Allowing hunting on Sunday gives state wildlife agencies more flexibility in managing populations, including the ability to increase hunting in areas that have unsustainably high game populations. 

The most common reason that hunters stop hunting is lack of hunting opportunity. 

Since most hunters work Monday through Friday, a ban on Sunday hunting essentially cuts their available hunting time in half.

Sunday hunting helps recruit new hunters.

Many young people have school or athletic obligations on Saturday. Allowing Sunday hunting means that parents have more opportunities to hunt with their sons and daughters, sharing an important part of America’s heritage. Maintaining America’s large number of hunters is crucial to maintaining the revenues necessary to sustain crucial wildlife and wildlife habitat conservation programs. Anti-hunting groups support Sunday hunting bans as part of their general opposition to hunting.

Sunday hunting provides an economic benefit to many rural areas. 

Every day that hunters are in the field, they spend money on fuel, food, lodging and dozens of incidentals that go along with a day’s hunt. You can see the positive economic impact Sunday hunting would have on the restrictive states here.

Out-of-state license revenues grow as a result of Sunday hunting. 

Hunters are more likely to go on out-of-state hunting trips when they can hunt a full weekend, and out-of-state hunters pay higher license fees and spend more money on incidentals than in-state hunters.

Current Sunday Hunting Bans

The latest states to expand Sunday hunting opportunities are Connecticut, North Carolina and Virginia. In 2015, North Carolina added firearms to the legal methods of take while hunting on private land on Sundays, and Connecticut partially rescinded its ban to allow bow hunters to hunt deer on private property in overpopulated deer management zones on Sundays. In 2014, Virginia hunters experienced a successful, first season of Sunday hunting on private land and public waterways. 

Two states prohibit hunting on Sunday for any wild game.

Those states—Maine and Massachusetts—each considered legislation to lift the bans in recent years.

Nine states allow limited Sunday hunting. 

Maryland and West Virginia allow hunting on Sundays in some counties on private land. South Carolina and Virginia allow Sunday hunting on private land and some public waterways for waterfowl. North Carolina allows Sunday hunting with archery equipment and firearms (with restrictions) on private lands and only by falconry on public lands—meaning migratory game birds may not be taken on Sundays. New Jersey allows bow hunting on Sundays for deer on state wildlife management areas and private property. Pennsylvania allows hunting on Sundays for foxes, crows and coyotes. Connecticut allows deer hunting on Sunday with a bow and arrow on private property provided such property is in a deer management zone identified by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to be overpopulated with deer. Delaware allows Sunday deer hunting on specified days on private lands with landowner permission and on certain public lands designated by government agencies. 

Recently, the nine aforementioned states have taken some steps to allow hunting on Sunday. 

None of these states has experienced the horror stories predicted by anti-hunting activists. Each continues to have healthy wildlife populations. Hunters continue to be safe and responsible. Church attendance remains unchanged. Landowner-hunter conflicts have not increased. In sum, Sunday hunting has had only a beneficial impact on these states and the future of hunting in them. 

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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Virginia: Report on Legislative Action in Richmond This Week

Yesterday, the House Courts of Justice Criminal Law Subcommittee reported House Bill 43 by a 7-3 vote.  Sponsored by pro-gun Delegate ...

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Virginia: Sunday Hunting Bill Passes in Senate Committee

Senate Bill 154, the Senate companion to House Bill 1237, passed by a 9-4 vote today in the ...

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Virginia House votes to overturn Sunday hunting ban

The House of Delegates voted 71-27 Tuesday to allow hunting on Sundays. If the legislation is approved by ...

Hunting  

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Virginia: Sunday Hunting Bill Passes in House!

In great news for Virginia sportsmen as well as the future of gun rights and hunting in the ...

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Virginia: Report on Legislative Action in Richmond This Week

Today, the House of Delegates defeated four anti-gun amendments offered to House Bill 705.  Sponsored by pro-gun Delegate Todd ...

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Virginia: Sunday Hunting Bill Passes Committee Hurdle and Goes to House Floor

In a big win today for Virginia hunters and sportsmen, House Bill 1237 was reported favorably by the House Agriculture, ...

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Virginia: House Committee to Vote on Sunday Hunting Bill Tomorrow

Tomorrow, January 22 at 8:30 a.m. in House Room C of the General Assembly Building in Richmond, the ...

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Friday, May 24, 2013

Connecticut: Pro-Hunting Reform Passes House

Yesterday, the state House of Representatives passed legislation that would partially repeal the state ban on Sunday hunting.  ...

Friday, May 24, 2013

Connecticut: Pro-Hunting Reform Passes House

Yesterday, the state House of Representatives passed legislation that would partially repeal the state ban on Sunday hunting.  ...

News  

Monday, March 25, 2013

North Carolina: Bill would allow Sunday hunting

A new bill moving through the state Senate, SB 224, co sponsored by Sen. Jim Davis, R-Macon, would ...

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