A successful hunt teeters between landing the right tree or the wrong one, leaving the hunters fate of downing the trophy deer to dangle precariously. In bowhunting tree stand placement means everything. Even being 12 inches out of position can cost the hunter a clear shot of the quarry. This is why, during hunting seasons, it is quite common to see scores of bowhunters vying for ideal spots to hang their tree stands. Such scrabbles often culminate to conflicts or complications; therefore, various organizations have established tree stand laws and etiquette hunters must abide by.
Here are some of the regulations:
- The tree must remain intact. Hunters may use ladders or climbing sticks to ascend to their trees; however, inserting spikes, nails or any other foreign objects into the tree is forbidden.
- Temporary tree stands can be built by hunters but permanent ones are not allowed.
- To ensure that every bowhunter gets an equal opportunity to use coveted spots, tree stands can only be put up seven days before the opening of the hunting season and taken down seven days after the hunting is over. These regulations also help in curtailing theft as most hunters leave their stands for an entire year.
- Hunting areas follow the policy of first come first serve, so if you see another hunter who has set a tree stand, erect yours a 100 yards, if not more, away from his/hers. A quick survey of the setup your fellow hunters have made should make this an easy task.
- Using the tree stand of another bowhunter is not allowed without his or her consent.
- If you’re hunting on private property you must ask for a landowner’s permission before building tree stands, or trying to remove one that has already been established.
- The North Dakota Game and Fish Department has added a new regulation which stipulates that tree stands left unattended on state grounds have a tag with the owner’s name and full address. This will allow for personnel to reach the owner if a dispute might occur. It also helps in battling robbery of tree stands within the precincts.
If you abide by the simple yet essential laws of the public hunting areas you choose to hunt in ,you will not only help create a conducive environment for hunting but also have the opportunity to indulge in a delightful experience you would always want to return to. Furthermore, by agreeing not to inflict damage on the trees you are playing a role of a global citizen in preserving the world’s pristine forests.
If there are other tree stand regulations that exist in the fields you hunt in, feel free to share.