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Can you carry a mobile radio while deer hunting?


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Can you carry mobile radios with you while deer hunting at all? I know you can't use a mobile radio to "aid in the taking of game" (lots of room for interpretation there), but, can you use them to signal your other party members when you down a deer to fill the last open tag and possibly prevent accidently taking too many deer?

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I know you can carry it & use it to communicate you're okay, going to go to the truck, safety related issues. I was just having this conversation with a guy at church this week & neither of us knew if it was okay to use it to communicate you'd filled the last tag. I think the law says you have to be within x amount of distance to fill someone's tag, so I'd guess if you were that close communicating be radio would be fine, otherwise maybe not. That's a tough call, someone may want to ask the DNR that one.

If it is okay, I'm quite sure if your buddy turned his radio off or his batteries went dead, so in turn also filled the tag, you're still in trouble...

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Since I haven't hunted in MN for quite a few years (and we didn't use radios) I'm not sure here. WI will allow you to use 2-way radios for pretty much anything BUT calling for a tag (if I read the regs correctly).

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Babe was using the radios to actively aid his party making a drive - "OK, get ready, we're starting the drive now". I'm talking about "Hey I got one, we're done, don't shoot any if you see one". IMHO There's a big difference, but I don't know if that makes it any more legal. Just looking for other opiniions. Thanks for the responses so far. I think this is 1 big gray area open to a lot of interpretation.

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When party hunting you need to be close enough to each other that you can visibly see the other person or can communicate with them via voice without the aid of a radio.

Calling someone on the radio to notify them that they need to bring you a tag would clearly violate the law in my opinion.

Using the radio to tell your fellow party members you are going back to the cabin for lunch or that you not feeling well or that you shot a deer and need help tracking would probably be acceptable uses for the radios.

Good luck.

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I just posed this question to the DNR (through their HSOforum). It appears that its legal as long as you arent using it to "take" wild game. See my questions and their response below...

------ My Email ----------------------------


I have a question regarding the use of radios or cell phones during big game hunting here in Minnesota.

I know the regulations state that: "Using walkie talkies, cell phones, or other radio equipment to take big game or small game is unlawful."

Would it be illegal to have a radio or cell phone in possession while hunting?

It seems clear that it is illegal to use radios in the process of making a drive, or to convey information that would help another hunter take a deer, but what about information not related to taking a deer?

Such as: Would it be legal to keep in contact with others in your hunting party, say to keep a check on older or younger group members?

Or, What about using a radio to let other members of a hunting party know that you had just taken a deer?

Or, to let your party members know that you are going in to your shack and wont be hunting for some period.

Thanks much,

------- DNR Reply ------------------------


You are correct that they cannot be used to help take game. But the examples you gave you could use that cell phone.

good luck


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