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View Full Version : Shooting in city limits...?


send it_hit
12-31-2010, 1:12 AM
First off I'm in Hayward, in Alameda County. That said...

We've been having a real crow problem in my neighborhood. I live on a cul-de-sac and at the top there is a small "grove" of redwood trees. Crows on their way to and from Garin Park stop here and make a lot of obnoxious noise, usually early in the morning. My neighbor at the top of the court (she's pretty much my grandmother, helped raise me when I was a wee lad :D ) knows that I am into shooting, and asked me to "take care of them." I explained to her that I can't dispatch them with my .22 or .17 due to the legality of discharging them in the city limits.

Does anyone know if I can take them (within the limitations of the law, as in number per day, etc, with a valid liscence) with my pellet guns? Any LEO's online who can give me a direct law that allows/disallows this? I've asked around and from what I gather, pellet/air guns seem to be a gray area. But my common sense says it's a no no.

Before I get too ahead of myself I should point out that I DID checked to be sure:

a) I am not in danger of shooting "through" the trees and into houses, there is a ton of land behind them.
b) There is no chance of any ricochets making it to any houses.
c) There are no trails in the vacinity (or in the direction I am thinking of shooting) and as far as I know the land behind it is closed to any sort of hiking.
d) I am able to recover the crows when I shoot them.
e) The neighbor's property this would occur on is okay with me, if not begging me to dispach of them. (They're incredibly annoying :mad:)

Please let me know, she asks me every day to come up and do it for her, but I want to give her good reasons for not doing it. She's a nice lady :)

jtmkinsd
12-31-2010, 1:28 AM
From Hayward Municipal Code:

SEC. 3-3.00 FIREARMS AND FIREWORKS. It shall be unlawful for any person at any time, to fire or discharge or cause to be fired or discharged any cannon, anvil, gun, pistol or other firearms, Chinese or other firecrackers, bomb, fireworks or explosive preparation of any nature whatsoever, within the limits of the City of Hayward.

SEC. 3-3.10 FIREARMS, EXCEPTIONS AS TO USE. The foregoing provisions as to the use of firearms shall not apply to peace officers in the discharge of their official duties and using reasonable care; nor to persons using firearms in necessary self-defense or in a careful manner for the purpose of destroying noxious animals upon land owned or occupied by them; nor to organizations which are by the United States Federal Government authorized to use such firearms; nor to members of any lawfully organized gun club when using said firearms for the purpose of practicing shooting at targets upon established target ranges; nor to any person having permission of the owner of the land to shoot birds and animals during hunting season.

I would say fire away :D But to be certain...why don't you give a call to your local PD.

send it_hit
12-31-2010, 1:33 AM
dangit I was looking through that online right before I typed my post but didn't see that. Thanks sir! I actually was thinking of calling in the morning anyway, so I'll cite that and see what they're thinking. :D

send it_hit
12-31-2010, 1:37 AM
also, from 485. American Crow.:

( d ) Crows may not be taken in the following areas:

(1) Within the boundaries of the Trinity and Mendocino National Forests south of Highway 36.

(2) North and east of a line beginning at the mouth of the Eel River; south along the Eel River to the town of Alton; east on Highway 36 from the town of Alton to Highway 89 west of Chester; south and east on Highways 89 and 395 to Interstate 15 near Hesperia; south on Interstate 15 to Interstate 10; and east on Interstate 10 to the California-Arizona border.

Guess you'd have to have a depredation permit for those parts.

Purple K
12-31-2010, 3:33 AM
Areas one and two are nowhere near Hayward. Be carefull, make sure that they're crows and not ravens. There's a difference.

yellowfin
12-31-2010, 5:00 AM
This calls for Mike Iaconelli...

FLIGHT762
12-31-2010, 6:15 AM
Take a look at the attached synopsis for taking Crows in California. There are Federal regulations and State regulations. It looks like under both State and Federal regulations, Crows may only be taken with a firearm, bow and Falconry.

http://www.fgc.ca.gov/regulations/new/2003/crow_regs.pdf

Shooting them in the City limits with a pellet gun, you are opening a can of worms. Some Cities have ordinances prohibiting hunting within city limits. Shooting birds with a pellet gun within City limits is going to get you unwanted attention. If there is any prohibition, you could also be looking at a 597 (A) P.C. charge (cruelty to animals). I have seen this happen. Almost every city has an ordinance prohibiting discharging air guns (BB and pellet guns) I don't know about Hayward, but it is moot since Crows can only be taken with firearms, bows and Falconry.

There are ways to get a depredation permit, but you are within city limits, not out on a farm.

Years ago, Crows were considered varmints and you could shoot them with impunity. Now there is a season and bag limit on them.

There was treaty with Mexico and Canada to protect a threatened specie, but the treaty protected the common Crow also. It sucks, but it is what it is.

send it_hit
12-31-2010, 9:29 AM
wow... thanks for that insight. Flight, may I ask what happened that you are referring to about seeing an animal cruelty charge? That's terrible :(

Purple K, what are "areas 1 and 2?" BLM land? I've been checking out Hollister BLM land and it seems like no matter what, for target shooting or some hunting it's quite a drive.

GrizzlyGuy
12-31-2010, 10:09 AM
Good info in all the posts above, here is a link to the California Hunting Regulations (http://www.fgc.ca.gov/regulations/current/mammalregs.asp) as well. The F&G code excerpts that you saw in the crow document that FLIGHT762 linked to are fleshed out in there (search that page for "American crows").

FLIGHT762
12-31-2010, 11:18 AM
wow... thanks for that insight. Flight, may I ask what happened that you are referring to about seeing an animal cruelty charge? That's terrible :(


A 14 Y/O boy baited a tree squirrel onto his third story apartment patio deck railing with some peanuts. The boy shot the squirrel with a pellet gun. The squirrel fell three stories to the ground at the feet of a gardener. The squirrel went thought his last death throes at the gardener's feet. The gardener, being traumatized called the Police. In the investigation, our supervisor ordered us to arrest the boy for felony cruelty to animals (597 P.C.). I was beside myself and felt that was excessive and voice my opinions, but we had to make the arrest. If it were my decision, I'd have cited the boy for the discharge of the pellet gun (city ordinance) and maybe taking small game out of season.

The issue is, if you are not legally hunting an animal that is considered game or varmint, you can easily be prosecuted for cruelty to animals, especially in a urban environment.

send it_hit
12-31-2010, 2:47 PM
Wow... sucks for the kid, bad idea to begin with though. I agree with the discharge and taking game citing, cruelty seems extreme.

I think I'd rather not risk my time, money, and possibly freedom for this. Besides, I kinda like crows... They're smart :D

Glock22Fan
12-31-2010, 3:05 PM
I know someone who had crow problems. They tried several air rifles but generally found that the wing feathers act as nature's Kevlar. Had to step up to a .22LR to penetrate to do serious damage. However, that was hearsay, as I wasn't actually there. YMMV.

Burbur
12-31-2010, 3:49 PM
+1 on Natures Kevlar, those damn things are tough.

I have always been apprehensive about shooting birds with rifles, because at the angle you shoot, who knows where your bullet will come down...

BoxesOfLiberty
12-31-2010, 4:57 PM
This'll at least scare your crows away:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5OMpi6-5p0

You might want to check with the municipales first though.

jtmkinsd
12-31-2010, 6:22 PM
This'll at least scare your crows away:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5OMpi6-5p0

You might want to check with the municipales first though.

Don't know if you need one that big and menacing...they sell bird bomb guns that look like starter-pistols. My brother used to have one...looked like a little .38 revolver. :D

send it_hit
12-31-2010, 7:35 PM
This'll at least scare your crows away:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5OMpi6-5p0

You might want to check with the municipales first though.


wow... as awesome as that is, I think that would bring more attention to me than just popping one with a rifle... It is cool though! :)

About the feathers being kevlar, I have killed a couple with a pellet gun in the past at my grandpa's house... but I also saw just as many hit them in the breast with a "thump" and they flew off. I don't like unecessary damage without a clean kill, and I would imagine the impact would break some ribs or the breastbone :(

I did cock and fire an old break barrel I have out my window where a large crow was "caw'ing" the morning away on a cypress tree. Medium loud pop, puff of smoke, he/she took off. :) That may be all I need, even if it is technically discharging there's a lot less to worry about.

tankerman
12-31-2010, 8:52 PM
Areas one and two are nowhere near Hayward. Be carefull, make sure that they're crows and not ravens. There's a difference.Pretty easy to tell the difference. Ravens are large, make strange sounds and are annoyingly curious.