Hunting season is here again. We are now beginning the “early archery season.” Folks may be observed traipsing through the woods with bow and arrow in hand in pursuit of the elusive Odocoileus hemionus (blacktail deer).
Although many hunters want to bag the big buck, others will harvest a doe. Vashon and Maury islands are “any deer” hunting areas.
Archery season starts Sept. 1 and continues through Sept. 30. Only archers are legal hunters during the month of September.
Oct. 4 through Oct. 10 is “early muzzle loader season,” and Oct. 11 through Oct. 31 is the “modern firearm season.”
We live in a “firearms restriction area.” No high-power rifles are allowed. During the “modern” season, revolver pistols, shotguns, muzzleloaders and archery are legal if the hunter has a “modern” tag.
Hunters must receive permission to hunt on private land. It is illegal to discharge a firearm or launch an arrow at, along, across or from any maintained road, regardless of surface.
Hunters, please respect landowner’s rights, hunt safely and remember that our islands may be heavily populated with deer, but also with people and their homes. Additionally, hunters should always know their target and what is beyond.
The most active time of day for deer hunting is early morning and late afternoon — when the deer are most active. Hunting commences a half-hour before sunrise through a half-hour after sunset.
Islanders who walk their dogs, ride horses or walk for fun: I strongly suggest that you wear an orange garment during hunting season. The Vashon Sportsmen’s Club, in cooperation with Vashon True Value, is providing a few orange safety vests for community members. Islanders may borrow these vests from True Value.
It is important that those who borrow vests return them at the conclusion of hunting season. Many of the vests that were loaned last year were never returned. This is troubling, as those vests are not available to those community members who may need them this year.
We greatly appreciate the cooperation of hunters, community members and property owners. Have fun, enjoy the beautiful surroundings and keep safe.
— Phil Mahurin is a member of the Sportsmen’s Club.