December 27, 2005
LEWISTON, Maine --Products with names such as "Deer Cocaine," Deer
GoInsane" and "Stump Likker" are used to bait deer. They're OK to sell
in Maine, but are against the law to use and could be one reason for an
increase in illegal baiting that game wardens are seeing.
"Anything that a deer can ingest is illegal in Maine," said spokesman
Mark Latti of the state Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Department.
Wardens say they're seeing an increase in other forms of poaching,
such as illegal use of tree stands, in parts of the state. To be legal,
tree stands must be marked with the owner's name and address. The
ladders and platforms can only be placed on the owner's land, unless
another landowner gives advance permission.
In the Lewiston-Auburn area, wardens are seeing increased use of deer
stands, both portable and permanent.
Local laws restrict the use of guns to hunt deer in that area. But
some archery hunters are crossing the legal line by putting out bait to
draw their prey into bow range. In Lisbon, a man was fined $500 last
year for using an illegal stand as well as baiting.
Warden Sgt. Doug Tibbetts said deer baiting is nothing new in the
Bangor area, but it's on the increase. Tibbetts said that as more land
becomes posted, baiting is becoming more common. Another factor may be
an increase in bait products that are available in a number of stores as
well as over the Internet.
Some products include supplements such as calcium and sodium that
deer crave, while others contain flavors like molasses and apple that
deer like. Those are OK to use in some places, but not Maine. Natural
bait, such as pumpkins, apples and peanut butter, are also forbidden to
Warden Rick Stone acknowledged it's not easy to catch hunters using
illegal bait. "But we're seeing it a lot," he said.
Decoys are legal in Maine.
Information from: Sun-Journal,