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Big-game check-in process basically unchanged
Feb 05, 2013 4:00 pm
Starting with this spring’s turkey season, hunters will have an option of checking in their big-game kills via “mobile application” and the process will include a “harvest log.”
The terminology has created some confusion. To clarify: hunters can still check in turkeys and deer the same ways as in the past -- at a TWRA check-in station or on-line through the TWRA website.
Chuck Yoest, TWRA Big Game Coordinator, says the added procedure “is just an option some hunters might want to use. We want to make it as convenient as possible.”
“Mobile application” refers to an iPhone. The “harvest log” is the same as the Permanent Kill Tag issued upon check-in, and which must accompany the harvested animal to a processing plant or taxidermist.
All other options and procedures in the check-in process remain the same as in recent seasons:
When a turkey or deer is killed, a Temporary Kill Tag must be attached to the animal. (Except for holders of Lifetime Licenses.)
A hunter can take the kill to any TWRA checking station. A clerk will enter the kill in the TWRA data bank and issue the hunter a Permanent Kill Tag to be attached to the animal, along with a new Temporary Kill Tag.
Or the hunter can transport the animal to a location with internet service – such as his home -- and check it in on-line at tnwildlife.org. Simply click on Big Game Check-In and follow the instructions. Once the check-in is completed, a new Temporary Kill Tag can be printed out.
Check-ins must be done the day of the kill.
Other regulations remain unchanged, such as field-dressing kills in a way that allows for identification of the sex of the animal.
Details are available in the Tennessee Trapping & Hunting Guide, available at most outdoors outlets.
The on-line check-in service has become extremely popular since it was made available by the TWRA a few years ago. It allows a hunter to take his kill home and check it in, rather than travel to a TWRA checking station – sometimes late in the day or in bad weather.
Yoest says that on-line convenience has not resulted in a lack of harvested animals made available for TWRA biologists to study.
“They can still get all the data they need at TWRA checking stations,” he says, “and if they needed to inspect more animals they can always go to a deer-processing plant where they are brought in in large numbers.”
The spring turkey season is set (March 30-May 12). The remainder of the 2013-14 hunting seasons and regulations have yet to be determined. They will be approved and finalized by the Tennessee Fish & Wildlife Commission in coming months, with input from outdoorsmen and the TWRA.
Hunters are reminded that licenses expire Feb. 28. They can be renewed on-line (tnwildlife.org) or at most outdoors outlets. Prices and license options remain unchanged from last year.