Q: When I went to fill in my moose-hunt questionnaire, I saw it is the law to do so. Some hunters do not. What is the penalty?
-Ron Rowatt, Ennismore
A: New mandatory hunter reporting requirements came into effect in Ontario on January 1, 2019.
Under these new regulations, all hunters who are issued a moose, deer, elk, black bear, wild turkey, or wolf/coyote tag or validation certificate will be required to complete and submit a report.
Hunters must complete reports even if they don’t end up hunting or harvesting an animal. They can provide their reports online or by phone through MNRF’s new licensing service. Hunters will no longer receive postcard surveys by mail.
Generally, hunter reports must be submitted within 14 days following the end of the hunting season for that species.
Moose hunters who obtain a tag/validation certificate through a tourist outfitter and non-resident bear hunters must provide their reports within seven days of the close of the season to the tourist outfitter, bear operator, or Ministry office where they received their tag/validation certificate.
The potential consequences to a hunter for not reporting have changed. Hunters who fail to complete their report by the prescribed date will be subject to warnings, charges, and fines as before.
The new licensing service will automatically track whether hunters have fulfilled their reporting obligations. Failure to provide the required reports, or submitting false or misleading reports, may result in the hunter being prevented from purchasing a licence or licences in the subsequent year.
As a convenience, the new licensing service provides email reminders to hunters of the reporting deadlines.
More information is available by clicking here and specific details regarding the new hunter reporting requirements are provided in the 2019 Hunting Regulations Summary.
–David Critchlow (Provincial Enforcement Specialist, MNRF)
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Originally published in the Nov-Dec 2018 issue of Ontario OUT of DOORS magazine and edited to reflect the new regulations. Ask a CO is a regular feature in the print edition.