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Anderson & Hughes P.C. Blog

Friday, January 13, 2017

Drones and Hunting in Colorado – Patti Arthur, Esq.

While there aren’t a lot of general drone-specific regulations or laws on the Colorado books just yet, wildlife hunting is one area that has received particular attention. Colorado was the first state to recognize the use of drone technology specifically related to hunting. Believe it or not, this happened way back in early 2014.

The Code of Colorado Regulations in the section dedicated to Colorado Parks and Wildlife – Manner of Taking Wildlife – Aids in Taking Wildlife states:

“It shall be unlawful to use a drone to look for, scout, or detect wildlife as an aid in the hunting or taking of wildlife.”

The regulation further goes on to state:

“For the purposes of this regulation, drone shall be defined as including, without limitation, any contrivance invented, used or designed for navigation of, or flight in the air that is unmanned or guided remotely. A drone may also be referred to as “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle” (UAV) or “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle System” (UAVS).”

The State of Colorado is obviously serious about prohibiting the use of drones as an aid for hunting wildlife, and the regulation’s definition casts a broad net over what is considered to be a “drone”. Interesting too is that the regulation does not consider professional use versus hobby use of drones as an aid to hunting.

Thus, according to this regulation, drone use as an aid for hunting any wildlife in the state is strictly prohibited.

We predict there will be additional development in this area of the law. Stay tuned….

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