The Department of Natural Resources is reminding Indiana hunters that even though deer attractants found at retail stores can be purchased and used in the wild, hunting near them is illegal.
They are considered bait.
Indiana regulations prohibit the hunting of deer with the use or aid of bait, which is defined as "a food that is transported and placed for consumption, including, but not limited to, piles of corn and apples placed in the field; a prepared solid or liquid that is manufactured and intended for consumption by livestock or wild deer, including, but not limited to, commercial baits and food supplements; salt; or mineral supplements."
This includes artificial products marketed under names such as Deer Co-Cain, Buck Jam, Trophy Rock, as well as mineral blocks, salt blocks, and even natural foods such as corn and apples.
"Basically, if you place anything that isn't grown in the area and hunt there, it's illegal," said Lt. Larry Morrison, outdoor education director for DNR Law Enforcement. "Hunting next to a corn field or from an apple tree is legal, but placing corn or apples under your tree stand would put you in conflict with current Indiana law."
An area is considered baited for 10 days after the product and the affected soil is removed from an area.
Odor differs from bait. Cover scents or scent attractants are legal to use when hunting.
Archery season currently is underway in Indiana and continues through Jan. 5, 2014. The urban zone segment in designated areas continues through Jan. 31, 2014.
The most popular segment of Indiana's deer hunting season – firearms – begins Nov. 16 and ends Dec. 1, followed by the muzzleloader season (Dec. 7-22) and the special antlerless season (Dec. 26-Jan. 5, 2014).
A violation of Indiana's no baiting regulation is a Class C misdemeanor.
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