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Phone: 360-902-2515
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Information on Prohibition of Battery-Powered and
Other Electronic Decoys for Waterfowl Hunting

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In August 2001, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission prohibited the use of battery-powered and other electronic decoys for hunting waterfowl. The rule (WAC 232-12-257) applies only to battery-powered and other electronic devices used as decoys. All devices that are powered by batteries (including, but not limited to "quiver/shaker magnets") or otherwise use electric current (including, but not limited to solar or AC power) are prohibited for use in attracting waterfowl in Washington. Other methods of creating motion in decoys are not prohibited (e.g., "jerk-cords", flags, kites, windsocks, and other wind-powered decoys).

The Commission action was because of growing concerns by Commissioners and the public regarding the rapidly increasing level of technology in methods to attract waterfowl, and considered over 1,200 questionnaire responses and almost 300 emails and letters, plus public testimony. Comments from the Commission were focused on the preservation of hunting traditions and concerns about fair chase. An additional briefing was provided to the Commission in April 2002 regarding recent studies of motorized waterfowl decoys in other states. This briefing may be viewed as a slideshow by clicking on the link provided above.