Question: What other provinces and territories allow crossbow hunting?
All jurisdictions of Canada except New Brunswick, Newfoundland , Labrador and Yukon allow hunting wildlife with crossbows.
Question: How will this help to decrease the deer population in settled areas?
The flight path of an bolt, such as those used with crossbows, is shorter than that of a bullet. Therefore, crossbows provide hunters with an additional tool to harvest deer closer to buildings while maintaining safety.
Question: What certifications are needed to hunt with crossbows and is the existing bow hunting education course offered in NS sufficient?
For certification to hunt with a crossbow the person must :
A) have held both a valid firearm certification and a valid bow certification in the Province before September 1, 2012
B) produce proof satisfactory to the Department that they have been certified to hunt with a crossbow in another jurisdiction, or have hunted with a crossbow in another jurisdiction in the 5 years immediately before their application to be certified, or
C)have a certification to hunt with a firearm or bow and complete a crossbow hunter safety course. The Crossbow Hunter Safety Course is available online .
Question: Crossbows can hunt in closer proximity to residential neighbourhoods. Does this put humans or pets at additional risk?
The use of crossbows does not introduce an additional risk to families or pets. Crossbow hunters have the same restrictions as bow hunters in terms of distance-; they must be a minimum of 182 metres from a dwelling in order to discharge a weapon.
Question:Why were crossbows restricted and now suddenly permitted? What has changed?
In recent years hunters have repeatedly asked that crossbows be permitted for use in hunting. Increasing problems with overabundant deer in developed areas has brought to light the possible value of crossbows as a hunting tool that can safely be used in areas where rifles cannot be used, and perhaps reduce deer numbers where they have become a public nuisance and hazard on our highways.
Question: Why were crossbows previously on the restricted weapons list?
There has been a longstanding concern by conservation officers and many hunters that crossbows are an ideal poaching weapon (i.e. easy to use, quiet and with a greater killing range than the more commonly used bow and arrow). Other jurisdictions within Canada and the United States have permitted the use of crossbows for hunting in recent years and have not detected any significant use of them as a poaching weapon.
Question: Which wildlife are hunters able to hunt with a crossbow and when can they be hunted?
Use of crossbows by certified hunters is legal for hunting all species that may be harvested with a bow or firearm except during the Special Open Seasons for Bowhunting.
Question: Is there a dress code for hunting with a crossbow?
Crossbow hunters must wear hunter orange or camouflage orange.
Question: What is the regulation for transporting a crossbow?
No Person shall possess a weapon in or on a vehicle at night unless it is encased.
(i) in a case which is properly fastened,
(ii) completely wrapped in a material which is securely tied around the crossbow,
(iii) in the locked compartment of a vehicle and the contents of the compartment are not accessible to the occupant of the vehicle from inside the vehicle,
(iv) in the case of a firearm, rendered inoperable by the attachment of a trigger lock to the firearm, or
(v) in the case of a crossbow, it is rendered inoperable by disassembling the crossbow or by attaching a lock to the crossbow.
Question: Is there a specific size crossbow for hunting deer?
Yes, the crossbow must have a draw weight of 150lbs (68kg) or greater and bolts with heads more than 2.2 cm in diameter.
Question: Where can crossbows be purchased?
Crossbows may need to be ordered through a hunting supply dealer.
Question: How old do you have to be to hunt with a crossbow?
You have to be 16 years of age or older to hunt deer with a crossbow.
Note that any resident or non-resident over 16 and under 18 years of age may apply for a Resident or Non-Resident Deer Hunting Licence provided:
2(i) the appropriate licence is acquired by the parent or guardian of the applicant at the fee prescribed; and
(ii) the applicant and the parent or guardian both sign the licence.
(b) Any person issued a Deer Hunting Licence under clause (a) shall, while hunting, be under the immediate supervision of the parent or guardian or any other responsible person eighteen years or over [who] is certified under the Hunter Education, Safety and Training Regulations made under the Act to hunt with a firearm or bow, as applicable.
Question: How do you register for a training course?
In order to take the crossbow course you must already hold a Wildlife Resources Card with either a hunting certification (HQ or HT) or a bow certification (B). You can register for the crossbow course at www.hmcgroup.ca/education
Question: How much does the training course cost?
Cost of the crossbow course is $29.95 + HST.
Question: Is there a separate crossbow stamp to hunt deer with a crossbow?
No, hunters will need the above mentioned certifications to hunt with a crossbow, but the deer hunting stamp is the same.