Several changes in hunting regulations in Kansas took effect on Friday, April 19 that are designed to provide more flexibility in legal equipment and provide more hunting opportunities.

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission has combined the nonresident antlered and antlerless deer permit into one either sex permit. The new permit will be $315 and provide the nonresident hunter with two tags, one for white tailed antlered deer and one for white-tailed antlerless deer.

Previously, nonresidents had to purchase a $300 permit for antlerless deer and a separate $50 permit for antlered deer so the new permit will save the hunter $35.

"It will save them some money and encourage the number of doe deer hunters in the state," said Col. Kevin Jones, KDWPT director of law enforcement.

This combination permit is now the only choice for nonresidents. Nonresident applicants are chosen through a drawing to receive the new permit. Hopefully, the new regulation will encourage more deer hunters to come to Kansas that is already a favored hunting area.

"We have been noted as a very popular state for hinging of a white tail deer," Jones said.

For the crossbow enthusiast, crossbows are now legal equipment during archery seasons for anyone with a valid archery permit. During last archery season, a trial was run for area and age restriction but it was confusing to the hunter where they could or could not hunt so the regulation was changed so crossbows can be used during archery season.

One of the new regulations is designed with the future of hunting in mind. Restrictions to electronic devices attached to bows were amended to allow cameras and range finders plus allowing radio frequency devices attached to arrows to make finding hit deer more efficient.

The device with the radio frequency would slide off the arrow and attach itself to the deer, making it easier to find the deer and reduce deer loss, Jones said.

Prototypes are under development and were shown to KDWPT several months ago. The Commission decided the stay ahead of technology and amended the previous regulation to include the upcoming locater devices as well as permitting cameras on bows to record the shot and range finders to give hunters more accurate information for their shot.

Laser sites with a visible beam of light are still not allowed.

Other changes now allow big game hunters to chose any caliber center fire rifle or handgun, any gauge shotgun with slugs and any muzzleloader and pistol .40 caliber or larger.

The Commission wanted to simplify this regulation and make it similar to existing laws in 35 other states, Jones said.

"This is an issue that has a rather passionate following on both sides of the issue," Jones said. "We feel this type of regulation will help the hunter use the firearm of their choice so they can use the best weapon they can to harvest big game."

Restrictions have also been lifted on 20-gauge shotguns or larger for turkey hunters. They can now use all gauges using shot size No. 2 through No. 9.

KDWPT 2013 deer season
• Youth and disability
Sept. 7 to Sept. 15
• Early muzzle loader
Sept. 16 to Sept. 29
• Archery
Sept. 16 to Dec. 31
• Pre-rut Whitetail antlerless
Oct. 12 to Oct. 13
• Regular firearms
Dec. 4 to Dec. 15
• Extended Whitetail antlerless
Jan. 1 to Jan. 12, 2014
• Special extended whitetail antlerless
Jan. 13 to Jan. 19, 2014
• Extended archery (DMU 19)
Jan. 20 to Jan. 31, 2014

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