Maine hunters have been allowed to take to the woods with a crossbow since 2020. The law expires next year. Should it become a permanent?
For lack of a better word, Maine has been "experimenting" with the use of crossbows. Back in January of 2020, a new law went into effect that added the use of crossbows to the Regular October Deer Archery Season and during the Fall Turkey season. According to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, the inclusion of crossbows in the regular archery season expires December of 2022. Should it become a permanent?
The law was drafted as a way of opening the door to more hunting opportunities, for more hunters. A crossbow can benefit hunters with disabilities, or those with less strength in their arms. Cranks and other devices aid in lessening, or nearly eliminating, the draw weight of the bow. As of now, only disabled hunters can use a crossbow during the expanded archery season.
It's well documented that hunters need to harvest more deer, especially this season. Any deer permit numbers are at a record high, yet we still aren't meeting IFW harvest goals, year after year. More options for lawful hunting equipment can definitely get more hunters in the woods, or at minimum give hunters more time in the woods. It will certainly be interesting to see what impact the trial run with crossbows produces for data.