There is a lot of state land available in the state to hunt. But, there are times and locations that state land borders private land and having access to the property would increase the success of the hunt. For all you hunters, the key to getting permission to hunt private land is the way you approach the landowner. Here are just a few tips on obtaining permission to hunt private land.
State law requires you obtain verbal permission from the landowner. Only the landowner can give hunting permission.
Obtain permission to hunt several farms. This assures you of a place to hunt if others are using the property or the landowner is not home.
Always obtain permission well in advance of the time you plan to hunt. Plan your visit early in the evening when the landowner, especially if a farmer, is likely to be home. If you will scout the area before hunting season, also request permission for that time.
Ask for permission by yourself or with one other person; do not take your hunting party up to the door. When approaching the landowner or family for permission. NEVER carry your gun and keep any dogs in your vehicle.
If you cannot visit the landowner, write an appropriate and friendly letter. Do not stick a note on the door. Your letter may request a date/time to talk in person, or you can make arrangements by mail or telephone. Do so at the landowner's preference.
Be prepared to provide your name and contact information and the dates and times when you would like to hunt a described portion of their land (e.g., the back 40 acres of the woods and cropland). Landowner may limit party size, ORVs or more.
Ask if there are crop fields or areas of the farm that should not be hunted.
Never shoot near farm buildings or where any people or livestock are living. Observe all safety zone areas - 452 feet from possibly inhabited structures.
Leave any gates you encounter the way you found them. If a gate is open, leave it open after you pass through. If a gate is closed, close it after you pass through.
Do not leave any trash. If you find litter already there, pick it up.
When the hunt is over, always thank the landowner. They then will know that you have left the farm and will not worry about you being lost or stuck on their property.
Offer the landowner a portion of your harvest off their land, such as a piece of game or portion of venison once your game is cleaned (or butchered). This gesture will help your relationship with the landowner. It also may help provide others with hunting opportunities from this landowner, and it helps build a positive image of hunting.
So just remember when obtaining permission to hunt that private land, be respectful, courteous and leave nothing behind. Treat that land as if were your own. Go out and enjoy the fall hunting season.
Written By: Mike Girolami, President of WorkWear1, www.workwear1.com., a Local Distributor of Carhartt Clothing, Redford, MI