When does jap millet become "bating"?

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When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby Nick06 » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:24 pm

How can you plant/flood jap millet, corn, etc and still be in compliance with federal fish and wildlife regulations about bating. It states it must be a "normal agricultural process". The planting and harvesting cycles must coordinate with cooperative extension guidelines.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby duckbio » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:34 pm

Jap Millet is not considered baiting if it is left in a food plot style for wildlife, or harvested for seed. Mowing and burning are ok for Doves, but not for waterfowl. Don't ask me why. Corn is the same way. It can be left unharvested in a field, or have a combine run through for the seed. Any seed left on the ground by this "normal" agriculture process is not considered baiting. In certain circumstances, mowing "failed" crops is not considered baiting, but I do not take that chance. If you have any doubts about legal issues, you should contact your local Wildlife Biologist or Game Warden for further explanation.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby rammajamma » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:00 pm

It is all a gray area. It just depends on if you have the game warden in your back pocket or not.

I do not even want to get started on my experience with game wardens.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby tenfingergrip » Sat Mar 31, 2012 7:36 am

For doves, you can manipulate the crop any way you want, bush hog, flatten, burn, disc, etc. For migratory waterfowl, you can flood a standing crop but cannot manipulate it in any way, including flattening it by driving over it, stomping it down by walking over it, shucking it, knocking seeds off the pods, etc. You can also flood a previously harvested agricultural crop and be within federal regulations.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby ByersFarm » Mon Apr 02, 2012 11:40 am

It becomes baiting when you manipulate it. Nothing grey about that. If a grain is a volunteer crop for a certain period you can manipulate it. I think this period is three years, meaning is has to have grown wild or volunteer for three consecutive years.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby tenfingergrip » Mon Apr 02, 2012 1:54 pm

Here's the page out of the USF&W migratory bird that deals with what is baiting and what is not. Doves and waterfowl are different in the fact you can manipulate a standing, grown crop for doves and cannot for waterfowl. The word and meaning of " Manipulate" does not include flooding a standing agricultural crop for the purpose of hunting migratory waterfowl. It is perfectly legal to flood a standing crop for hunting. It is perfectly legal to flood a harvested crop for hunting as long as the crop was harvested under normal, accepted agricultural processes.

In neither, dove or waterfowl hunting, is it permissible to spread, pile or otherwise place grain, salt or any other attractant on the ground for the purpose of hunting the migratory bird. You can bush hog, burn, push down or otherwise manipulate a standing crop for doves only.

http://www.fws.gov/le/HuntFish/waterfowl_baiting.htm

If you are in doubt, I would suggest you copy and print the page or pages I have referenced and carry them with you in case you encounter a warden who is not "up" on the regulations. I assure you they are out there. I deal with them weekly.

If you are unsure, still, you may pm me with your idea of what you want to do and I will advise you accordingly.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby KAhunter » Wed Apr 04, 2012 5:32 am

Basically, you can plant it, harvest it under a normal ag practice or leave it alone, then flood it. Its really pretty straight forward. Dont overthink it.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby RustyGunz1960 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:00 am

I've taken my boat quite a distance from the decoys to retrieve a duck carried away by the tide. In the process, I've scared up divers that ended up decoying into our spread, which my buddy then took. Was that herding? Another possible gray area. As indicated in the earlier post, you can spin it any way you want but the final determination will be made by the law enforcent officer, not by your convincing argument. Cops, of any type, are not fond of amatuer lawyers. I learned that as a youth, from the back seat of my father's car, as he continually got tickets handed to him :lol3:
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby KAhunter » Wed Apr 04, 2012 11:03 am

If a game warden is a jerk he can probably find something on you. If you are in the act of retrieving game, i dont see how that would be considered herding. Just like if you are trying ti find a duck in the jap millet and walk some down, its not illegal manipulation.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby kdog » Sun Jul 08, 2012 10:45 pm

The above post are somewhat true .....Jap millet can be planted and flooded the first year and hunted over ,but not cut or rolled ,manipulated in any way !!!!!!!ON THE SECOND year (if it comes up voluntary ) you can manipulate it ,cut it ,roll it etc...just cant do it the same year you plant it for waterfowl ....Millet is not considered a crop when it comes up voluntarily

From the same link above fws

Hunting Over Natural Vegetation

Natural vegetation is any non-agricultural, native, or naturalized plant species that grows at a site in response to planting or from existing seeds or other propagules.

Natural vegetation does not include planted millet because of its use as both an agricultural crop and a species of natural vegetation for moist soil management. __(However, planted millet that grows on its own in subsequent years is considered natural vegetation.)

If you restore and manage wetlands as habitat for waterfowl and other migratory birds, you can manipulate the natural vegetation in these areas and make them available for hunting.

Natural vegetation does not include plants grown as agricultural crops. Under no circumstances can you hunt waterfowl over manipulated crops prior to a normal harvest. Nor can you hunt waterfowl over manipulated wildlife food plots or manipulated plantings for soil stabilization.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby apexhunter » Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:56 pm

The key part of the "manipulating" part is the re-introduction of the seed. One can broadcast wheat over a plowed field as a normal agricultural practice for a cover crop and hunt over that field for doves. but one cannot go back and throw the same wheat seed down and hunt over the area. Similarly for ducks one can plant jap millet (or most any other seed bearing grass or grain crop) and leave it, combine some of it, mow part of it, ets (as described below) before flooding and you are okay...but you cannot reintroduce any grain or seed once the "field" is flooded. If you are not flooding to create an impoundment the basic rule is once any grain has been removed (like with a combine) no seed or grain can be re-introduced to the field.

The grey area comes into play by the term "normal agricultural practice". Since when (except for rice) is it normal for a farmer to flood a grain field in the process of doing his mormal routine for growing and harvesting a crop? But flooding a corn field with some percentage of the crop remaining is totally legal...and a helluva way to make a good duck pond. Another grey area in the manipulation is walking down some standing crop and some wardens look carefully at that as illegal. Obviously some will be knocked down in the process of retrieving downed birds but I've seen some watch even that process very carefully. That said ducks in flooded corn will pull stalks or ears down and eat the grain so one does not necessarily need to mow or knock it down.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby tenfingergrip » Wed Jul 11, 2012 3:21 pm

Apex,
Before anyone takes your explanation at face value, you may want to read my post as to what the USFWS says about baiting and hunting over flooded crops: It is very specific and entirely different for doves than it is for ducks.

http://www.fws.gov/le/HuntFish/waterfowl_baiting.htm
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby apexhunter » Thu Jul 12, 2012 4:14 pm

I agree and probably stated it a bit wrong. My point is that one cannot reintroduce grain (manipulate) into a field once harvested...period. In the case of jap millet you are correct that volunteer plants (second season forward) can be mowed or manipulated.
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby pete/pmr » Sun Jul 15, 2012 7:40 am

Normal practice of ag! My friend and I were hunting along a river that passes buy a silage bunk on a farms property,and a game warden told us it was hunting over a baited area! Now the ducks and geese have been walking up to that bunk,(that has been there for over 20 years),and are eating or picking corn out of the silage,daily,it is about 30 yards from the river,we are on the opposite side of the river,(an additional 30 yards away),where the ducks circle in and land then swim over to the other side and walk up onto the farmyard and head for the corn bunk!Doesn't this fall under .."Normal Practices" ..if the farmer has been doing this same thing for the last twenty years?
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Re: When does jap millet become "bating"?

Postby tenfingergrip » Sun Jul 15, 2012 8:18 am

Sorry Pete,

Direct copy of the paragraph from the USFWS regulations on what is baiting that is posted above in my post.

"Other Agricultural Concerns
"You cannot hunt waterfowl on or over areas where farmers feed grain to livestock, store grain, or engage in other normal agricultural practices that do not meet the definition of a normal agricultural planting, harvest, or post-harvest manipulation. "

Another problem area is "influencing the flight of the waterfowl so as to bring them into gunning range" where there is not definitive distance from the lure where you, the hunter, are attempting to take waterfowl. It is up to the discretion of the warden, unfortunately, if that is the case. However, you must have been aware that the lure is there and/or have made no attempt to ascertain there is no "bait" luring the waterfowl in order to be found legally guilty.

The regs used to be worse but the fines were less. That last sentence above made the regs easier on the innocent, unaware hunter and really allowed the USFWS to burn you a new a'hole if you are caught and convicted of baiting now. $15,000 fine max. + car+gun, etc.
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