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For hunters taking aim at waterfowl or sandhill cranes, hunting around feedlots and other livestock operations may be considered baiting and therefore illegal. 

Feed corn or other livestock feed often is considered bait for hunting waterfowl and sandhill cranes because it wasn’t planted there, leftover after harvest, part of an after-harvest manipulation or part of a soil stabilization effort. Hunting waterfowl or sandhill cranes may also be illegal in areas surrounding some livestock feeding operations where the birds are changing their flight patterns and diverting toward the livestock feed or bait. 

Federal rules, along with state regulations, dictate the guidelines for hunting these avian species. Sandhill cranes and migratory birds like ducks, geese, coots and mergansers are protected by state and federal laws, and harvest regulations are developed cooperatively by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. 

For more details on the state and federal migratory game bird baiting regulations, see the 
Upland Game Bird, Small Game, Migratory 2020 Game Bird and Wild Turkey Hunting Regulations, pages 7 and 16.

Jason Hunter
Jason Hunter, Lander Region wildlife supervisor

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