A Look At Our Hunting Laws
According to the Conservation of Wildlife Act, Chapter 67:01 of the Laws of Trinidad and Tobago, hunting is permitted in Trinidad and Tobago between the first day of October and the last day of February. The Close Season, when no hunting is permitted, runs from March 1st to September 30th. Contravention of this regulation is liable on summary conviction to a fine of two hundred dollars.
During the Close Season, no person shall serve, purchase, sell, expose or offer for sale any iguana, agouti, tattoo, lappe, wildhog, pelican, booby, man o’ war bird or other animals listed in the second schedule of the Conservation of Wildlife Act. The pelican, booby and Man-o-War birds are fully protected and cannot be hunted at any time. Contravention of this regulation will lend to a fine of two hundred dollars on summary conviction.
Hunting is not permitted in any Forest Reserve between the hours of 7:30pm and 5:00am year round.
Under the Act animals declared as vermin can be hunted by the owners or occupiers of private lands without any license. Animals declared as vermin are bats, rats, squirrels, manicou, yellow tail birds and green parrots. Because of damage done to agricultural crops by one of our national birds, the cocrico, Forest Officers are authorised to offer relief to the farming community by destroying cocricos found on farmers’ holdings.
All Forest Officers and Honorary Game Wardens who have reasonable grounds for suspecting that any person has contravened any provision of the Conservation of Wildlife Act, may stop and search such person and any vehicle or boat in which they are travelling together with any baggage or thing in their possession. They may also enter and search any tent, building or land which such person occupies, and seize all guns, dogs, boats, vehicles or other equipment which is suspected of being used in connection with any such contravention.
It is fairly common knowledge that hunting does go on in Tobago throughout the year, as the regulations described above are not being enforced due to lack of resources. Environment TOBAGO is currently working with a hunters' group and others to promote sustainable harvesting of game specieson Tobago.