Sunday Hunting Ban

On the seventh day, God rested, but should hunters be forced to rest as well?

Sunday Hunting Ban

Key Facts:

  • In a recent economic analysis conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, it was found that providing a Sunday hunting option in Virginia would contribute an additional $296 million to the state‘s economy and 3,927 new jobs would be created.
  • Those opposed to Sunday hunting have claimed that allowing Sunday hunting would harm game populations and pose safety issues. However, none of the states that recently allowed Sunday hunting to occur saw these claims substantiated.
  • A recent empirical study (2011) conducted by the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation (CSF) staff found that if Sunday hunting restrictions were lessened in the six states that have the most severe restrictions (CT, DE, ME, MA, PA, VA) an additional 117,500 hunters would likely be recruited or retained by 2016. This would result in substantial increases in funding for the fish and wildlife agencies within these states.

Originally designed to encourage church attendance, bans on Sunday hunting are still in at least partial effect in 11 states. Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia all either restrict or ban hunting on Sunday, and there are a lot of battles to fully legalize the practice in these East Coast states.

According to Jeff Trandahl, Executive Director of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, legalizing Sunday hunting in these states would have a $1 billion positive impact on the economy. It would also help improve participation adding 117,500 hunters in just Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.

The farming communities are some of the most vocal anti-Sunday hunting advocates. Legislation is consistently introduced in these states to repeal the ban on Sunday hunting, but it’s a battle that hunters are losing.