Back in February the Arizona Game and Fish Commission approved the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to amend Article 3 (Taking and Handling of Wildlife), which included proposals to restrict the use of trail cameras. This came about as complaints had rolled into the AZGFD regarding the perceived excess use of trail cameras on limited water sources, and the unfair advantages such tactics created within specific units, specifically units 13B (the Strip) and 9.

The core argument for the proposed regulations rested on the perceived infringement of Fair Chase ethics. Accordingly, the Department formed a Fair Chase Committee to develop the proposal to ban live-action devices and place restrictions on the use of passive/manual cameras within 1/4 mile from any developed water sources. Since then, there has been a couple of public meetings to engage the hunting community and gain their feedback.

However, the Commission received major pushback from the community during the June public meeting. According, to the Daily Miner, that input came with a clearer definition of Fair Chase provided by the Boone and Crocket Club, as well as other leaders on the front line of Fair Chase ethics, which affirmed that the use of manually operated cameras does not violate it.

With that, the Commission voted to only ban the live-action cameras and leave the use of manual cameras to remain unchanged. There will be another open public commenting period from July 13 to August 13 to further influence the
Supplemental Rulemaking process regarding the use of passive cameras, leading up to the final vote on September 21.

If you'd like to provide your input on the matter you can email: rulemaking@azgfd.gov