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General Laws

Section 11. A person shall not fish in any inland waters of the commonwealth, unless he is a minor under fifteen years of age, nor hunt or trap any bird or mammal except as otherwise provided in sections four, fourteen, fifteen, twenty, twenty-one, twenty-three and thirty-seven without first having obtained a sporting, hunting, fishing, or trapping license. No sporting or hunting license shall be issued unless the applicant provides to the issuing authority proof of compliance with section fourteen.

The director, with the approval of the fisheries and wildlife board, shall establish classes of sporting, hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses, which shall be issued upon payment of the appropriate fee, the amount of which shall be determined annually by the commissioner of administration under the provision of section three B of chapter seven. Such license classes may specify the types of fish and game authorized to be taken, the time period when the license is valid if less than one year, and such related aspects as the director may determine, provided that for a class of license valid for a consecutive period of days less than one calendar year, said days shall be specified on the license and the duration of the license shall be so limited, notwithstanding any provisions of section eighteen and section thirty-two.

Resident sporting, hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses shall be issued to the following classes of persons:— (1) A citizen of the United States, resident in the commonwealth for at least six consecutive months immediately prior to his application for a license, and (2) a person who is on active duty in the armed forces of the United States and is stationed within the commonwealth. Nonresident sporting, hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses shall be issued to any other citizen of the United States.

Sporting, hunting, and fishing licenses shall be issued to aliens:— (1) who have established residence in the commonwealth for a period of at least six consecutive months immediately prior to making application, and (2) all other aliens; provided, however, that in the case of a hunting or sporting license, an alien shall hold a valid permit issued under the provisions of section one hundred and thirty-one H of chapter one hundred and forty.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, no fee shall be charged for any license issued under this section to a resident citizen of the commonwealth over the age of seventy, or for a fishing license which is issued to a resident citizen of the commonwealth who is blind, under the age of 18 or has an intellectual disability, or for a sporting, hunting, or fishing license issued to a paraplegic; provided, however, that in the case of a nonresident citizen who is a paraplegic, that said nonresident shows sufficient evidence to the issuing agent that he or she is so afflicted; and provided, further, that the state in which said nonresident is a resident provides a reciprocal privilege to residents of this commonwealth who are similarly afflicted.

The fee for an archery stamp or a primitive firearms stamp issued under section thirteen and the portion of such fee which the authorized agent or city or town clerk issuing such stamp may retain shall be determined under the aforementioned chapter seven provision.

The fee for a Massachusetts waterfowl stamp issued under section thirteen, the designated portion of said fee which may be retained by the authorizing agent or city or town clerk issuing such stamp and the amount which shall be transferred to the state treasurer for deposit and disbursement, shall be determined by the commissioner of administration annually under the provisions of section three B of chapter seven. The state treasurer shall forward upon request of the director and subject to annual appropriation, one dollar of the fee for each stamp issued to Ducks Unlimited, Inc., of Long Grove, Illinois pursuant to an agreement between the director and Ducks Unlimited, Inc. Such funds are to be used exclusively for waterfowl management in the Atlantic provinces of Canada. A written report shall be annually submitted to the division by Ducks Unlimited, Inc. setting forth what projects, activities and expenses were realized from the commonwealth’s contribution. The state treasurer shall forward upon request of the director and subject to annual appropriation, up to three dollars of the fee from each stamp issued to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation of Washington, D.C. for fulfillment of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan pursuant to an agreement between the director and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation or to another nonprofit, waterfowl conservation and management organization whose purpose is to acquire, enhance, develop, or protect waterfowl habitat with the approval of the Fisheries and Wildlife Board. Such funds are to be used exclusively for waterfowl management in the Atlantic provinces of Canada and the northeastern United States. A written report shall be annually submitted to the division by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and/or any other organization receiving funds, setting forth what projects, activities and expenses were realized from the commonwealth’s contribution. Any unexpended balance shall be credited to the Inland Fisheries and Game Fund.

A person shall not kill nor possess any species of game bird or mammal for which a permit is required unless he shall first have paid the established fee. A fee shall accompany each such permit application granted, the amount of which shall be determined pursuant to section three B of chapter seven, except that no fee shall be charged those persons qualifying for a farmer or landowner permit as determined by the director.

The director shall also provide trapper training courses to certify licensed trappers on the effective use of box, cage and conibear type traps, for furbearing mammals, including beaver or muskrat. Such training courses shall be held at least twice each calendar year.

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