Difference between baiting and attractants
Q: What are the differences between baiting and attractants? I know baiting is illegal but was curious about attractants. What qualifies something as an attractant? Can you please define and differentiate? (Josh L.)
A: There is no difference … bait is an attractant and an attractant is bait. No specific definition is provided in Fish and Game laws for these terms, but the definition of “baited area” in the California Code of Regulations Title 14, section 257.5 is helpful.
It states in part: “Resident game birds and mammals may not be taken within 400 yards of any baited area. (a) . . . baited area shall mean any area where shelled, shucked or unshucked corn, wheat or other grains, salt, or other feed whatsoever capable of luring, attracting, or enticing such birds or mammals is directly or indirectly placed, exposed, deposited, distributed, or scattered . . . “
Under this regulation, the use of any substance (real or artificial) that is capable of attracting an animal to an area and when used causes the animal to feed (on the substance) is prohibited. Generally, aerosols sprayed into the air are permissible because there is nothing to feed on. But the same products applied to a surface (e.g. tree, brush, rock, etc.) where the animal licks, eats, chews, nibbles, etc. the surface is considered feed and is a violation.
In addition, intentional acts that disrupt any birds’ or mammals’ normal behavior patterns (CCR Title 14, section 251.1) as well as feeding big game mammals (CCR Title 14, section 251.3) are prohibited.
For the complete regulations, go to http://dfg.ca.gov/regulations/ to find the California Mammal Hunting Regulations for 2012-2013.
Casting nets for catching own bait
Q: I want to use a net to cast and catch my own bait rather than continue to buy bait at the stores. Is it legal to do so? I do most of my fishing in lakes and I see shads and minnows I would like to catch. I can’t seem to find any information on the website that relates to catching your own bait and if you could what are the sizes of the nets that I can use. Any information or alternatives in regard to this would really help. (Khanh Vu)
A: Unfortunately, the device you describe (commonly called a throw net, casting net or Hawaiian throw net) is not legal to use in freshwater. Approved baitfish may be taken only by hand, with a dip net, or with traps not over three feet in greatest dimension (CCR Title 14, section 4.05. In addition, possession of these nets in inland waters or within 100 yards of any canal, river, stream, lake or reservoir is a violation of state law (CCR Title 14, section 2.09).
Where does inland end and ocean begin?
Q: I would like to fish with two rods in the Delta but don’t know whether the regulations are in the freshwater books or in the ocean books. Is the Delta part of the ocean regulations or is it considered inland waters? Where does it change from ocean to inland if considered inland? (Brian S., Felton)
A: You can legally fish in the waters of the Delta with a second rod stamp. Inland regulations apply from upstream of the Delta to Carquinez Bridge. The definition of inland waters vs ocean waters is, “Inland waters are all the fresh, brackish and inland saline waters of the state, including lagoons and tidewaters upstream from the mouths of coastal rivers and streams. Inland waters exclude the waters of San Francisco and San Pablo bays downstream from the Carquinez Bridge, the tidal portions of rivers and streams flowing into San Francisco and San Pablo bays, and the waters of Elkhorn Slough …” (CCR Title 14, section 1.53).
Hunting with a 30-30 but dispatching with a .22
Q: If I hunt deer with a 30-30 cal, can I carry a .22 pistol at the same time (not to shoot deer)? And if I wound a deer with the 30-30 cal, can I kill the wounded deer with the .22 cal? (John D., Ramona)
A: Yes, it is legal to carry a .22 caliber rimfire pistol while taking deer during an open rifle season. No, you may not kill a wounded deer with any rimfire cartridge (see CCR Title 14, section 353). If hunting in Condor Country, remember that your pistol ammunition must also be lead-free.
Non-lead bullets for squirrels in condor country
Q: If I am a land owner or a land owner’s agent engaged in squirrel depredation in the condor area, do I have to use non-lead bullets? (John B.)
A: Yes, even if you are using rimfire ammunition to shoot non-game mammals, the use of projectiles containing lead is prohibited in the condor range. (CCR Title 14, sections 355 and 475.)
Carrie Wilson is a marine biologist with the California Department of Fish and Game. While she cannot personally answer everyone’s questions, she will select a few to answer each week. Contact her at CalOutdoors@dfg.ca.gov.