Big Bore Air-Rifle Hunting

According to New York Department of Environmental Conservation Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos:

“The popularity of air-powered firearms is growing, largely because of technological advancements … These modern firearms produce the force necessary to efficiently harvest big game animals. In addition, because big bore air rifles are not as loud as conventional rifles or shotguns, allowing their use may make hunting more acceptable in locations with higher human densities, including areas where deer are overabundant.”

We oppose this proposal, in part because:

  • The big-bore air rifle is so powerful that the bullets go right through their victims, causing wildlife to slowly bleed to death rather than being killed instantly.
  • According to the DEC, “One of the advantages of using air-powered rifles is that they’re not as loud as conventional rifles or shotguns, making them more acceptable in locations with higher human densities and overpopulations of deer.” Last year, New York State reduced setback distances from 500 feet to 150 feet for vertical bows and 250 feet for crossbows. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services program is currently considering environmental assessment, which allows for and encourages lethal deer management, including hunting, across New York State. Do you want big-bore rifles being used to hunt deer near your home? This is the direction the DEC seems to be taking us.
  • Gun sales fund the DEC Bureau of Wildlife’s budget, and so the agency promotes sport hunting and other policies that enable and encourage the destruction rather than the protection of wildlife (like the recent proposal to eliminate mute swans in New York). Across the country, government agencies in charge of protecting wildlife are profiting off their slaughter.

If you care about wildlife in New York State and oppose sport hunting, please speak out. Public comments will be accepted through Feb. 8, 2016, by email to (include “air rifle regulations” in the subject line) or by writing to:

Bryan L. Swift
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Bureau of Wildlife
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-4754

Big Bore Air Rifle (Source: New York Daily News)

Thank you to GooseWatch NYC for sounding the alarm. Visit their site.


Contact Us

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting / C.A.S.H.
P.O. Box 562
New Paltz, NY 12561