NOTICE: This article is for information purposes only! This article is ONLY for state laws that are DRONE specific. Local laws and “aircraft” related laws could potentially apply and were outside of the focus of this article. It might NOT be up to date. You should seek out a competent attorney licensed in the state you are interested in before operating.
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Current as of February 21, 2017
Z. “Drone” is defined as any device used or designed for navigation or flight in the air that is unmanned and guided remotely or by an onboard computer or onboard control system. Drones may also be referred to as “unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)” or “unmanned aerial vehicle systems (UAVS)”
A. Roads: It shall be unlawful to shoot at, wound, take, attempt to take, or kill any protected species on, from, or across any graded paved, or maintained public road and including the areas lying within right-of-way fences or 40 feet from the edge of the pavement or maintained surface, in absence of right-of-way fences.
B. Roads, artificial wildlife: It shall be unlawful to shoot at artificial wildlife on, from, or across any graded, paved, or maintained public road and including the areas lying within right-of-way fences or 40 feet from the edge of the pavement or maintained surface, in absence of right-of-way fences.
C. Vehicles, boats, aircraft: It shall be unlawful to shoot at any protected species from within a motor vehicle, power boat, sailboat, or aircraft. EXCEPTION – Migratory birds may be taken from a motor-driven boat (or other craft with attached motor) or sailboat when resting at anchor or fastened within or immediately alongside a fixed hunting blind or is used solely as a means of picking up dead birds.
D. Harassing protected wildlife: It shall be unlawful, at any time, to pursue, harass, harry, drive, or rally any protected species by use of or from a motor-driven vehicle, powerboat, sailboat, drone, or aircraft.
E. Hunting after air travel: It shall be unlawful for anyone to hunt for or take any protected species until after the start of legal hunting hours on the day following any air travel except by regularly scheduled commercial airline flights or legitimate direct flight to the final destination.
F. Use of aircraft for spotting game: It shall be unlawful to use aircraft or drone to spot or locate and relay the location of any protected species to anyone on the ground by any means of communication or signaling device or action.
G. Using information gained from air flight:
(1) It shall be unlawful to hunt for or to take, or assist in the hunting for or taking of, any protected species with the use of information regarding location of any protected species gained from the use of any aircraft until 48 hours after such aircraft use.
(2) It shall be unlawful to hunt for or to take, or assist in the hunting for or taking of, any protected species with the use of information regarding location of any protected species gained from the use of any drone at any time.
H. Vehicle off of established road: During the seasons established for any protected species, it shall be unlawful to drive or ride in a motor vehicle which is driven off an established road when the vehicle bears a licensed hunter, fisherman or trapper. EXCEPTION: 1) Snowmobiles; 2) To retrieve lawfully taken game not in an area closed to vehicular traffic. 3) All landowners, lessees or their employees, while on their owned or leased lands in connection with legitimate agricultural activities.
I. Closed roads: During the seasons established for any protected species, it shall be unlawful to knowingly occupy, drive, or cause to be driven any motor vehicle on a closed road when the vehicle bears a licensed hunter, angler or trapper.
J. Handicapped license:
(1) Shooting from a vehicle: The holder of a handicap license is authorized to shoot at and kill protected species during their respective open seasons from a stationary motor-driven vehicle that is not on a public road or highway. The director may issue permits to shoot from a stationary vehicle to applicants who provide certification that the applicant is permanently disabled in accordance with the American Disability Act. Such certification shall be signed by an M.D. or O.D. licensed to practice in the applicant’s state of residence.
(2) Driving off established roads: Holders of a handicap license may, with permission of the landowner, lessee, or land management agency, drive off established roads to hunt for or take squirrels or game birds, excluding turkey, during open seasons.
(3) Assistance for handicapped hunter: The holder of a handicapped license may be accompanied by another person to assist in reducing to possession any big game animal which has clearly been wounded by the licensed handicapped hunter.
K. Aircraft, drone and vehicle exemptions to this rule: The Director may exempt a person from the prohibition of utilizing an aircraft, drone or vehicle for management purposes.
[126.96.36.199 NMAC – Rp, 188.8.131.52 NMAC, 12-15-2016]
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