Montana Spear Hunting Legislation Defeated

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Montana Spear Hunting Legislation Defeated

[Ed. Note: Hunting for fun? Stalking and killing animals for "sport"? I do believe sports are for willing participants choosing to compete. Yes? The Montana legislature (a state known for its many hunters) stopped the passage of this horrific legislation. Say yeah!]

From Emails received by All-Creatures.org
April 2011

The bill to allow a small group of enthusiasts to hunt with spears has been stopped in the Montana House.

The measure targeted at a subgroup of hunters who hunt like prehistoric man for sport was tabled in the House Fish, Wildlife and Parks committee in March 2011.

The bill, which had already passed through the Senate, drew a large amount of public interest because of its unusual topic. Gov. Brian Schweitzer singled out the spear hunting measure as a "kooky" proposal from tea party conservatives that hold sway in the Legislature.

Hunters supporting the bill said it was an exciting sport that connects them with the outdoors.

Critics of the proposal say there was no need for the legislation and that spear hunting could be used for poaching.

From the Petitionsite.com where the original action alert was posted:

We do not support an animal being speared from a tree or potentially chased for miles whilst it is terrorized, just so it can be hunted with a spear or knife, and stabbed repeatedly or its throat slashed to kill it, whilst the animal is paralyzed by fear and pain and completely bewildered.

It is not known how many stabs it will take to kill an elk, deer or other big game animal or how the animal will eventually succumb to its death. This does not show respect for the animal and is not about obtaining food. It is marketed reportedly for those bored with using a gun or bow and arrow. Speared animals that are not found will be left wounded. This potential number is unknown. There is no information available to provide this answer from the other limited states that permit this.

There is a high certainty someone will hurl a spear into a herd of elk or deer hoping to hit one. The likelihood is good other wildlife species will be speared. No training is required. There is no definition of a legal weapon. The danger to dogs and their potential attack of the prey is not to be minimized. This bill contradicts MCA 87-3-124 that states a person may not use dogs to hunt or chase game animals in Montana.