LEGAL FOR UNPROTECTED WILDLIFE ONLY (NON-GAME SPECIES)
Per an e-mail from the Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources Enforcement Policy/Legal Analyst:
"Minnesota's game and fish laws generally specify the equipment that can be used to take protected wild animals. Slilngshots are not allowed for protected wild animals. They could, however, be used to take unprotected wild animals such as coyote, striped skunk, porkupine, etc."
Per an e-mail from the assistant chief of the Montana Law Enforcement Division:
"As far as any animals that FWP manages, that is, requires a license or permit for the legal taking, the allowed methods of take are listed in each of the respective regulations. Slingshots are not among them. As far as non-game species which FWP does not formally manage, there are no restrictions on the method of take set by the state."
Includes a weapon which acts by the force of gunpowder or from which a shot is discharged by the force of an explosion, as well as an air rifle, an air gun, a BB gun, a slingshot and a bow and arrow.
Includes all areas within the Town of Smithtown, exclusive of areas wholly within any incorporated village.
The purpose of this chapter is to prohibit any person from discharging a firearm in those areas of the Town of Smithtown in which such activity may be hazardous to the general public or nearby residents.
The discharge of firearms is deemed hazardous to the general public and, therefore, prohibited in all areas of the Town of Smithtown except those areas as stipulated under § 160-5, Exceptions.
Firearms may be discharged upon one's own property and upon the property of another with the written consent of the landowner, provided that any such discharge of firearms does not occur within 500 feet from a dwelling, school or occupied structure, or a park, beach, playground or any other place of outdoor recreational or nonrecreational activities; and further provided that any such discharge of firearms does not violate the provisions of the New York State Environmental Conservation Law.
[Amended 1-9-1990; 4-3-2012]
More details on Michigan, per an e-mail received from the Law Enforcement Divsion:
"Thank you for contacting the DNR. There are certain species which can be taken with a slingshot…primarily most of the small game species. Other species have regulations that specify what types of hunting apparatus can be used to take that species. Examples would be waterfowl and deer.
"As for your comment about the slingshots that are capable of shooting arrows, our legal team is looking into the legality of them. Questions have been raised as to whether a slingshot that shoots arrows, also known as a slingbow, falls under the definition a bow, crossbow, or still a slingshot. Hopefully we will hear something soon."
The list has results for 18 of the 50 states so far. There is still much work to do. Thank you to those who have taken the time to help. If you haven't contributed information for your state, please consider doing so. It only takes a phone call or an e-mail.
LEGAL FOR SMALL GAME AND FURBEARERS THAT HAVE A HUNTING SEASON.
Per e-mail received from the Iowa DNR:
"Thank you for using the Iowa DNR website. It would be legal to take small game (squirrels, rabbits, pheasants) and furbearing animals that have a hunting season, coyote, raccoons etc., using a slingshot since there is no restriction on method of take for these game species. It would not be legal to hunt deer or turkey with a sling shot due to restrictions on method of take."
@zippo: That would be great! If you wanted to start at the end of the alphabet and work backwards, that would be a big help. I'm working my way forwards and have sent some out that I'm still waiting to hear on, so I wouldn't want to duplicate efforts.
Here's what I'm sending them. Feel free to change the wording as you see fit. Please post your findings using a format similar to what I've been using above.
If you are not the correct person to answer this question, please forward to someone who can.
I'm doing a survey of slingshot hunting regulations in the US, and I am hoping you can provide me with some information about your state's regulations.
- Does your state allow slingshots to be used to hunt anything (small game, nuisance/varmint species, etc.)?
- If so, what is permitted?
- Is there someplace online where I can see the relevant regulations?
Thank you for your assistance.
For the states that I can't find e-mails, I'm skipping them for now until I have time (or until someone else) can call them.
Per e-mail from DNR Information Center Supervisor:
"We don't have restrictions on sporting arms for any unprotected species, but slingshots are not a legal sporting arm for any protected species or game species in NM. See the rules books for information about game species vs. nongame. Please see the link below for statutes and rules.
"There are no species that are allowed to be hunted with a slingshot in New Hampshire. NH RSA 207:3 states the following:
207:3 Lawful Methods of Taking. -
I. Wildlife shall be taken in the daytime between 1/2 hour before sunrise and 1/2 hour after sunset with a gun fired at arm's length or bow and arrow, unless otherwise specifically permitted.
II. A full automatic rifle shall not be used at any time nor shall a semi-automatic rifle be used to which is attached a magazine or clip holding more than 5 cartridges, nor shall a full jacketed metal case bullet be used, either in its original form or any alteration thereof.
III. Paragraph II shall not apply to the use of .22 or smaller caliber rimfire firearms.
IV. A person may take wildlife during the open season therefor with the aid of a dog, unless otherwise specifically prohibited.
When we refer to an animal being taken by other means, we generally refer to a trap or net, and while fishing we allow for a spear with certain species."
"In short, it is illegal to use a slingshot to hunt any "game" animals. The longer answer would be that slingshots would be legal to use on "unprotected" animals. Nevada classifies animals in several different categories. All "game" species are exactly that, species that have some food value and sport value. "Unprotected" wildlife is anything not listed as game, threatened or protected (i.e. coyotes, skunks, raccoons, rodents, etc.). There is not an actual list of unprotected animals, it is just what is left after the lists of everything listed as game, protected and threatened. I will post the link to our website here: www.ndow.org.
Click on the "laws and regulations" tab, then click on the "regulations" tab on the next screen. This will bring up links to our various Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) and Nevada Administrative Code (NAC). Regulations of interest for you would be: NRS 503.150, NAC 503.142, .143, .144, .145, .146 and .187 for weapons regulations. Classification of wildlife can be found under NAC 503.015 to NAC 503..070."
I checked with NYS DEC via e-mail and confirmed that unprotected species may be hunted with a sling shot (no wrist braces allowed) without a hunting license. From the NYS DEC website at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27801.html I found this:
In New York State, nearly all species of wildlife are protected. Most species, including endangered species, songbirds, hawks and owls are fully protected and may not be taken. The few unprotected species include porcupine, red squirrel, woodchuck, English sparrow, starling, rock pigeon, and monk parakeet. Unprotected species may be taken at any time without limit. A hunting license is required to hunt unprotected wildlife with a bow, crossbow, or firearm.
As such there are a small number of animals in NY that can be hunted with a slingshot... Woodchuck and pigeon are edible but I cannot speak to the rest!
"Arkansas regulations do not prohibit the use of a sling shot for small game."
After two e-mails, I still was not able to get clarification from this individual on whether non-game species could also be hunted with a slingshot. I would assume yes, but you should check for yourself.
LEGAL FOR PHEASANT, PRAIRIE DOGS, SQUIRREL, AND RABBIT
Regs state Pheasant, prairie dog, squirrel and rabbit are OK. Spoke with game department and was told unprotected species are also OK. While regulations say no shooting of any kind at quail on the ground, and slingshots are not listed as approved for quail when flying, I was told that there would be no problem with trying to shoot flying quail with a slingshot.
@zippo: As of this evening, I have made it up through Utah with sending e-mails. There are still a number of states where I have not been able to find e-mail addresses and will have to call, and I'll go back to those over the next few days hopefully.