Forty-two states allow night hunting for some game species. North Carolina is thinking about becoming the 43rd state and is proposing new regulations that would allow hunting of coyotes and hogs at night.
In an article in USA Today, both sides weigh in. A state biologist and a concerned landowner comment, followed by an opinion from California. In fact, the article quotes Camilla Fox, executive director of the Northern California-based Project Coyote, as saying night hunting is “ethically indefensible and ecologically reckless.” She is concerned that a hunter could mistake a red wolf for a coyote.
Frankly, if this article focused on my state of Missouri, I’d prefer to see the pros and cons from Missouri-based resources and residents, not from a California anti.
Mostly, the opposition is based in fear. Fear that hunters will run around willy-nilly with their guns and night optics, going all military on hogs and dogs in their neighborhoods.
Of course, I also realize that night hunting begets different tactics, but frankly, as hunters and therefore, shooters, we always are tasked with identifying the target before taking the shot.
What do you think? Is night hunting too risky in a state that harbors not only coyotes, but also coveted canine species? Tell us about night hunting in your state, and why you think it's safe.