Code Section

Fish and Game Code - FGC


  ( Division 4 enacted by Stats. 1957, Ch. 456. )

PART 3. MAMMALS [3950 - 4903]

  ( Part 3 enacted by Stats. 1957, Ch. 456. )

CHAPTER 3. Nongame Mammals and Depredators [4150 - 4190]

  ( Heading of Chapter 3 amended by Stats. 1971, Ch. 1470. )

ARTICLE 2. Depredators [4180 - 4190]
  ( Article 2 enacted by Stats. 1957, Ch. 456. )


(a) Except as provided in Section 4181.1, any owner or tenant of land or property that is being damaged or destroyed or is in danger of being damaged or destroyed by elk, bear, bobcat, beaver, wild pig, wild turkeys, or gray squirrels may apply to the department for a permit to kill the animals. Subject to the limitations in subdivisions (b) and (d), the department, upon satisfactory evidence of the damage or destruction, actual or immediately threatened, shall issue a revocable permit for the taking and disposition of the animals under regulations adopted by the commission. The permit shall include a statement of the penalties that may be imposed for a violation of the permit conditions. Animals so taken shall not be sold or shipped from the premises on which they are taken except under instructions from the department. An iron-jawed or steel-jawed or any type of metal-jawed trap shall not be used to take any bear or bobcat pursuant to this section. Poison of any type shall not be used to take any gray squirrel or wild turkey pursuant to this section. The department shall designate the type of trap to be used to ensure the most humane method is used to trap gray squirrels. The department may require trapped squirrels to be released in parks or other nonagricultural areas. It is unlawful for any person to violate the terms of any permit issued under this section.

(b) The permit issued for taking bears or bobcats pursuant to subdivision (a) shall contain the following facts:

(1) Why the issuance of the permit was necessary.

(2) What efforts were made to solve the problem without killing the bears or bobcats.

(3) What corrective actions should be implemented to prevent a reoccurrence.

(c) With respect to wild pigs, the department shall provide an applicant for a depredation permit to take wild pigs or a person who reports taking wild pigs pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 4181.1 with written information that sets forth available options for wild pig control, including, but not limited to, depredation permits, allowing periodic access to licensed hunters, and holding special hunts authorized pursuant to Section 4188. The department may maintain and make available to these persons lists of licensed hunters interested in wild pig hunting and lists of nonprofit organizations that are available to take possession of depredating wild pig carcasses.

(d) With respect to elk, the following procedures shall apply:

(1) Before issuing a depredation permit pursuant to subdivision (a), the department shall do all of the following:

(A) Verify the actual or immediately threatened damage or destruction.

(B) Provide a written summary of corrective measures necessary to immediately alleviate the problem.

(C) Determine the viability of the local herd, and determine the minimum population level needed to maintain the herd.

(D) Ensure the permit will not reduce the local herd below the minimum.

(E) Work with affected landowners to develop measures to achieve long-term resolution while maintaining viability of the herd.

(2) After completing the statewide elk management plan pursuant to Section 3952, the department shall use the information and methods contained in the plan to meet the requirements of subparagraphs (C), (D), and (E) of paragraph (1).

(Amended by Stats. 2019, Ch. 766, Sec. 7. (AB 1254) Effective January 1, 2020.)