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Thread: Question about bag vs possession limits

  1. #1
    Boolit Master


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    Question about bag vs possession limits

    Ok I have a question about hunting limits. We were having a debate at the gun club tonight.

    A daily limit is obvious, that's how many animals you can shoot in a day.

    What exactly is meant by a possession limit? I always thought that meant like "in your possession while out hunting" For example, lets say the daily limit on pheasant is 2, and the possession limit is 4. If you get pulled over and you have 4 or fewer pheasants you're OK.

    But what if you go hunting 5 different days, and shoot 2 pheasants each day. You take them home, process them, and freeze them. You have not exceeded your daily limit, but you have 10 pheasants in the freezer.

    Is this a violation of the possession limit???? I never thought this was a violation, but the majority of the boys said it was.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

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    To a Game Warden, 4 in possession, means 4 in possession while they are standing there looking at your stuff.

    If the game doesn't require a individual tag, and you want 10,
    take four home over two days, eat them,
    then go out hunting again for 2 days and get 4 more, and so on.
    It works the same as catch & posession limits for fishing.

    Here, deer require a individual tag.
    If your limit is 4, its for the whole year if you get one a week, or 4 in 10 minutes.

    For birds & fish, its while the Warden is looking at your catch.
    If you have a 2 a day limit on something and you have 4 in possession----
    You better have some camping gear and ice chests.
    If you have 4 and they are all fresh kills---- you got a real expensive problem.
    Last edited by Winger Ed.; 11-14-2019 at 11:16 PM.
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  3. #3
    Boolit Master

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    Florida has it set to a daily limit and possession limit. My understanding is daily limit is set to what can be harvested in a day. Possession limit is what is in the freezer. Like deer, here is four possession limit for a season and daily bag limits. So if if I have four deer in the freezer and I eat one. I can go get another one. As long the freezer never has more than four in it.

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  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick L View Post
    Ok I have a question about hunting limits. We were having a debate at the gun club tonight.

    A daily limit is obvious, that's how many animals you can shoot in a day.

    What exactly is meant by a possession limit? I always thought that meant like "in your possession while out hunting" For example, lets say the daily limit on pheasant is 2, and the possession limit is 4. If you get pulled over and you have 4 or fewer pheasants you're OK.

    But what if you go hunting 5 different days, and shoot 2 pheasants each day. You take them home, process them, and freeze them. You have not exceeded your daily limit, but you have 10 pheasants in the freezer.

    Is this a violation of the possession limit???? I never thought this was a violation, but the majority of the boys said it was.
    They are correct. Possession limit is total amount you can have period. That includes at home in the freezer even if it's from last year or 10 years ago.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Question about bag vs possession limits

    So who are these “freezer police“? I would like to see them invade & inspect!
    Might have to majorly rearrange the freezer for someone big…

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  6. #6
    Boolit Master

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    At least in the fine print in here, it says by purchasing a hunting or fishing liscnence you consent to a searches.

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  7. #7
    Boolit Master


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    I guess I will concede that you (and the guys at the club) are correct, but that just seems absurd. Of course, many laws are.

    I mean, a possession limit should allow for what you can legally hunt in a season. Who are they to tell me when I have to eat my game?

    Granted, the chances of ever getting called out on this are remote, but what a stupid law!!!

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy

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    The possession limit if for population control. If everybody went out every day and got their daily limit the population of the game would go down too much.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    I think it seems stupid because you’d never think to abuse it, but consider that a guy could take his limit 4 or 5 times a day, warden sees him coming and going all the time for a couple weeks. Never catch him holding too many, but might just want to make sure that there isn’t something stupid going on back at the ranch, say a wild game business.

  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by fiberoptik View Post
    So who are these “freezer police“? I would like to see them invade & inspect!
    Might have to majorly rearrange the freezer for someone big…

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    https://blogs.findlaw.com/blotter/20...-officers.html

    Game Wardens May Have Expanded Search Powers
    In some instances, game wardens may actually have more power than police officers when it comes to warrantless searches of persons or vehicles.
    Typically, police officers must have probable cause or consent to search a person or a vehicle without a warrant. A 2012 California Supreme Court case found that even when a game warden lacks reasonable suspicion that a person has violated an applicable fish or game statute or regulation, they may still stop the suspect's vehicle and demand the suspect display any fish or game in the suspect's possession.


    https://www.rollitup.org/t/game-ward...rrants.223926/

    "Search with or without Warrant

    The laws in many U.S. states allow game wardens to conduct certain types of searches with or without search warrants. The law in Louisiana for instance states in part "...any commissioned wildlife agent may visit, inspect, and examine, with or without [a] search warrant, records, any cold storage plant, warehouse, boat, store, car, conveyance, automobile or other vehicle, airplane or other aircraft, basket or other receptacle, or any place of deposit for wild birds, wild quadrupeds, fish or other aquatic life or any parts thereof whenever there is probable cause to believe that a violation has occurred. Commissioned wildlife agents are authorized to visit or inspect at frequent intervals without the need of search warrants, records, cold storage plants, bait stands, warehouses, public restaurants, public and private markets, stores, and places where wild birds, game quadrupeds, fish, or other aquatic life or any parts therof may be kept and offered for sale, for the purpose of ascertaining whether any laws or regulations under the jurisdiction of the department have been violated...."[4] The laws in other states may grant more or less search and seizure authority. These exceptions granted to game wardens are still considered to fall within the constitutional limits of search and seizure as outlined in the U.S. Constitution."
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
    lefty o's Avatar
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    possession typically means how many you have with you, and how many you have at home in the freezer too.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Hmmmmmmm……..I wonder if the possession limit in one's home State extends to and includes deer harvested in and brought back from another State where the limits are greater?

    Theoretical Question: If the possession limit in SC is 8 (say) and in FL is 4, can I have 12 in the freezer at home in FL in a single season?
    Last edited by Land Owner; 11-15-2019 at 05:22 AM.
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  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Possession limits are meant to prevent commercial sales of wild game products by anyone without the proper state license.
    Game wardens (wildlife officers) here in Florida can go wherever they have physical access to. They can cut locks on gates if they have reason to believe illegal harvesting of game is occurring—anywhere. None of this requires a warrant, although I believe one would be obtained if they wanted to search your freezer in your house.
    R/Griff

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    Years ago I had the Game Warden stop by while I was setting beaver traps .I seen him speed down the road and pull in fast where I was park. He got out and seen who I was and since he know me . He said I know I wasting my time . But I like to see your fur harvest lic. I show it to him and then he ask to check my SUV at the time and said ok. He check my traps for tags and did see the traps was all tag he seen . Then we talk some and then left. Yes the Game Warden have more power then the Police or Sharif dept. ,I understand why also. There is some good ones out there dose not abused there job on doing it. The you got those that dose.
    Life Member of NRA,NTA,DAV ,ITA. Also member of FTA,CBA

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by M-Tecs View Post
    They are correct. Possession limit is total amount you can have period. That includes at home in the freezer even if it's from last year or 10 years ago.
    This is correct. I just found this out a few months ago.

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master
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    What constitutes an animal for the purpose of determining a limit? A freshly killed deer is undoubtedly a deer. A field dressed deer is a deer. Ground venison wrapped in freezer paper and in a freezer, probably isn't identifiable as a particular deer at that point.

    I don't think game wardens are interested in how much venison, rabbit or other meat someone has in their basement freezer.

    Bag limits and possession limits are tools to define wildlife conservation efforts. It's easy to comply with those laws; stay at or under your daily bag limit and stay within the possession limits.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Typically - possession limits become important when you are out on a big multi-day hunting or fishing trip..... Say you are out for a duck hunting and camping weekend and there is a 2 per day limit/5 possession. You hunt 4 days and bag 6 which are in the cooler in your boat. You have exceeded the possession limit and would be in violation.

    Stuff like this has become more of an issue in places like Louisiana where people travel out by boat and do multi-day hunting and fishing out on the bayou....

    Theoretically - they can check your freezer at the house, but it is more likely they would simply check your truck or cooler when you are out in the woods or wherever.

    My own feeling is that possession limits are there to put limits on poaching.... Sure - you could legally take 15 crappie per day for 6 days straight - but it's just more likely that you are poaching if you have 80 in your cooler in your boat...

  18. #18
    Boolit Grand Master
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    truckjohn - you're right on point.

    Possession and bag limits are enforcement tools. Laws that make certain activities criminal must define what that action is. The law can't just say that it is illegal to poach, it must define exactly what poaching is.

    The game wardens are not out to "get" sportsmen. They are enforcing the game laws. Those laws must be created in such a way that the illegal activity is defined. Your hypothetical example of duck hunting with a 2 per day bag limit and a 5 bird possession limit is a good example. If the hunter exceeds the 5 bird possession limit; he/she is in violation. That's a clearly defined law.

  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master
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    And while we're on the topic. Bag limits would be meaningless without accompanying possession limits.

    Let's say there is a two duck per day bag limit but no possession limit. An unethical hunted could kill two ducks, take those ducks to: his camp, his car, his truck, etc. and then go back and kill two more ducks. He could repeat that cycle indefinitely and never be over the two bag limit. So in order to make an effective law the legislators add a possession limit to the bag limit. The legislative goal isn't to punish someone with a freezer full of ducks because they store their friend's and family's game in one place - the goal is to close the loophole of the unethical hunter.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master

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    fiberoptic, Game wardens in Oregon are Oregon State Police officers.
    With the proper search warrant , they are the "freezer police"...dale

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