Ontario Expands Sunday Gun Hunting

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Ontario is taking steps to increase control over rapidly growing wildlife populations by adding to the list of new areas where Sunday gun hunting will be permitted this fall, Natural Resources Minister David Ramsay announced today.

"We are pleased that many wildlife species in Ontario are healthy and thriving," said Ramsay. "However, in areas where there has been a rapid increase in certain populations, concerns have been expressed about significant crop and livestock damage, vehicle collisions involving wildlife, and a negative effect on habitat and wildlife health".

Last February, the ministry announced that Sunday gun hunting would be expanded in 67 municipalities and 14 unorganized townships this fall to help address those concerns. An additional 20 municipalities and four unorganized townships are being added to that list.

The recent regulation change to allow Sunday hunting in the 24 additional areas will take effect September 2 of this year. The change for the previously announced areas will take effect September 1. All the municipalities and geographic townships involved have expressed a desire to have Sunday hunting.

Previously, Sunday gun hunting was permitted in northern Ontario and in 25 municipalities in southern Ontario .

The change provides an extra one to three days of gun hunting for deer and 12 to 15 days for small game during the fall season.

The same regulation package is also being used to remove Cramahe Township and Algonquin Highlands Township from the list of areas in southern Ontario where Sunday gun hunting is already allowed. This change is being made at the request of those municipalities.

Other ways the McGuinty government is working to protect and sustain healthy wildlife populations and habitats include:

  • Expanding the ongoing provincial rabies vaccine program by testing a new vaccine and bait designed for skunks.
  • Launching Ontario's first biodiversity strategy to protect the province's plants and wildlife and the habitats that support them.
  • Providing stronger protection for Ontario 's provincial parks and conservation reserves through new legislation.

The public can learn more about the regulation change by visiting the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry at www.ene.gov.on.ca/samples/search/ and entering Registry Number RB06E6009.

More information about Sunday gun hunting in Ontario is also available on the fish and wildlife section of the ministry's website at www.mnr.gov.on.ca/mnr/fwmenu.html.