At the request of the Alabama Conservation Advisory Board,
Conservation Commissioner Barnett Lawley has issued an emergency
regulation to make it easier for landowners and leaseholders to
acquire crop depredation permits for feral swine and coyotes.
The affected landowners and leaseholders will no longer be
required to prove crop or property damage before a depredation
permit is issued. The new regulation states, “Feral swine and
coyotes are considered invasive nuisance species for which the
necessity of demonstrating specific damage is not required.”“People
who have feral hogs on their property know the damage they can
wreak on not only agricultural crops but the habitat of native
wildlife, as well,” said Commissioner Lawley, who signed the
emergency regulation March 13. “And studies have shown that coyotes
can have a significant impact on the survival of whitetail fawns
and also pose a threat to household pets.”
Landowners and leaseholders who wish to obtain a crop
depredation permit for feral swine and/or coyotes still must apply
for the permit, which is issued at no charge through the Alabama
Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Wildlife and
Freshwater Fisheries Division.
Crop depredation permits for all other protected birds and
animals require proof of crop or property damage before the permit
will be issued. Except for feral swine, permits shall not be issued
to take protected wildlife causing damage to crops planted for
wildlife management purposes. All wildlife killed shall be disposed
of under the supervision of the local conservation officers.
The emergency regulation, which is in effect for 120 days, also
states: “The means, methods and times for which a permit is valid
may be stipulated, except that only those arms and ammunition legal
for use during the open deer season may be used to kill deer under
the authority of a crop or property damage permit.”
The Conservation Advisory Board is expected to vote to make the
regulation permanent at its May meeting.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s
natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine
Resources, State Parks, State Lands, and Wildlife and Freshwater
Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR visit www.outdooralabama.com.