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Roughneck91 posted a topic in The CampfireGents, It appears AZGFD is proposing a rule change to R12-4-303 (Unlawful Devices or Ammunition) that will prohibit the use of a trail camera of any kind within 1/4 mile (440 yards) of a developed water source. A developed water source includes any man made structure or placed container capable of holding water such as stock tanks, holding ponds, water catchments etc. The definition of a developed water source is very broad and could technically apply to water run-off catchments constructed by ranchers a hundred years ago. Those of you that place trail cams on a wallow, water catchment (even you you make yourself) or a cattle tank will now be breaking the law and subject to fines and license revocation. It will fall under the category of using an illegal device for the purpose of taking wildlife which if convicted is a misdemeanor offense subject to a $750 fine and/or 4 months in jail (per offense) and could result in a 5 year suspension of your hunting license. The way the proposed rule is written is that it will be in effect all year long, not just during the hunting season. So if you own property and monitor your water sources or want to do some pre-season scouting by placing cameras over your favorite tank or wallow to see what's in the area, you'll be in violation. This rule change is currently in the comment period until April 15th, the game and fish commissioners will then review the rules at their May 4th meeting. Commission approved rules will be forwarded to the Governor's Council on regulatory review for approval and may go into effect for the 2019-2020 hunting season. If you want to view the presentation of all of the proposed rules, here's the youtube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6O0zBVSq_A&feature=youtu.be All public comments about the proposed rule making can be made by the following methods: E-mail: email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org. U.S. Mail: Arizona Game and Fish Department, Attn.: Jay Cook, Regional Supervisor FOR6, 7200 E. University Drive, Mesa, AZ 85207. Telephone: Jay Cook, Regional Supervisor FOR6, (480) 324-3540.
If you just want the quick story, skip down to Day 6. Let me start by thanking everyone on this forum for all the great posts and information that helped me prepare for this hunt. Also, I have to give huge thanks to my hunting buddies, Randy and Bob. They taught me a lot during this hunt. This was my first big game hunt and I don’t think I could have been any greener when it comes to this type of hunting, especially Coues. We put in for Unit 34A since it was closer to home and were planning on day hunting. While it was nice to sleep in my own bed each night, I think next time we will camp out. With that being said, on to the story. Day 1: Friday. We planned to hunt near a small pond in hopes that we would catch some bucks coming in for drink. We were out to our area that we had previously scouted by 5:30am. We picked our spots and split up with big hopes. I set up with a great panoramic view and plenty of area to glass. We sat all morning and we didn’t see anything at all. We met up for lunch and planned our afternoon. I picked a new spot a little closer to the water but again, nothing to be found by me. The other guys were able to spot some does but no bucks. Come nighttime, we pack out and plan our return in the morning. Day 2: Saturday. Pretty much a repeat of the Friday. Again, I spent the whole day glassing and searching and couldn’t even find a doe. I did spot a nice pack of javalinas in the morning, but that was about it. The other guys spotted some does, but again no bucks. This was a bit discouraging but I knew this wasn’t going to be easy. Day 3: Sunday. We planned to skip the morning hunt since we hadn’t seen any activity in the early am and the holiday weekend had a lot of people tooling around and making all kinds of noise. We decided to just head out for an late morning/afternoon hunt. We get out and setup by noon and spend the rest of the day glassing, glassing, glassing. Randy was finally able to spot a young spike and little 2x2 with his binoculars but never got chance to ever get his scope on them before they turned tail and ran. Again, I spend a day without seeing even a doe. Now it’s getting frustrating. Day 4: Monday. Bob’s sister-in-law suffers a heart attack the night before and he has to run to Prescott. Randy had appointments already planned and wasn’t able to go out. I sit at home stewing about not seeing anything in 2 ½ days and the fact that I was stuck at home and not hunting. I thought about going it alone but I decided to play it safe and stay home. I stayed busy by watching hunting shows and reading this forum. Day 5: Tuesday. Bob was still out of town so Randy and I head out for a late morning hunt. I setup with a good view of the ridge line and the pond and hope and pray I get a chance to see something, anything, it didn’t matter what I saw, I just needed to see some wildlife. I was starting to think I had some curse on me and I was never going to see a deer. Finally, I was able to spot a doe and her 2 fawns around 1:30pm. They were bedded down and I think the winds swirled around because they got up quick and headed out in a hurry with their tails up. Later in the afternoon, they came back for a quick drink but moved on and no bucks were to be found. Day 6: Wednesday. Family obligations made it so we could go out before sunrise so we head out around 8:00am. We get to our spot and plan twere we are going to set up. Randy splits off to the north in hopes that even if he spooked something it would head our way. Bob and I continue on towards our spots. Sure enough, Randy spooks some deer, it was just the doe and her 2 fawns but at least that was some early activity. Things were looking up. As Bob and I are about to split up, Bob spots 2 deer drinking at the pond, 150 yards out. We both quickly grab our binoculars and try to identify them. They are standing side by side and in the shadows, it was difficult to identify at best. Finally, the one in back lifts his head and sure enough, it’s a buck! The front one lifts his head and sure enough he’s a buck but smaller. Now, adrenaline is running at full speed and I’m having a hard time keeping my binos steady. Bob keeps an eye on them as I quietly lower some gear and get set for a shot. I setup my shooting sticks and chamber a Remington Core-Lokt 150gr round in my .308. I get my scope on them and line up a shot. Since they were standing side by side, I really wanted the front buck to get out of the way and give me a shot at the bigger guy. Just them, the smaller buck steps back a little and I have a clean shot at the bigger one. I squeeze off the round and the big guy just drops right where he stood. My excitement level went through the roof. Randy calls right away asking if that was my .308 he just heard. I was happy to confirm his suspicions and we all headed down to gather my prize. Since, he dropped right where he was standing, he was face down in the mud with his antlers buried. We got him out of the mud and cleaned up for a picture. He’s a nice 3x3 (not counting eye guards). Here he is with me and Randy. I'm on the left.
Just a quick question for you seasoned pros. I have been searching out water to set up a couple of trail cameras. I have found a couple of spots that looked promising only to find the water is gone a few weeks later when I return to check for pics. I recently found a small pool of water that had a frog in the water. Would this be an indication that the water is more reliable or do they just burrow down when the water disappears? I look forward to your thoughts on this. Also, I am looking in low desert around the valley. Thanks