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Oct 24, 2012 2:39 AM by Sean Mooney

Hunting law in Oro Valley allows hunters close to backyards

Oro Valley - Hunting is one of Arizona's most popular pastimes with thousands of acres of land open to hunters all over the state. What many residents may not realize is that some of that hunting land could be very close to your backyard.

It all stems from a law that went into effect in September of last year. The law allows for hunting on non-posted and state land including some property within the town limits of Oro Valley.

Police in Oro Valley say they always expect a spike in calls from people hearing gun shots whenever dove or quail season starts but some residents say since the new law went in to effect those shots have been a little too close for comfort. The way the law reads a hunter only needs to be a quarter of a mile from an occupied building or residence.

The areas most effected by the law include the horseshoe section behind Northwest Hospital, just off Tangerine Road and Oracle. The land on both sides of Tangerine just west of La Cholla is also open to hunting.

Oro Valley Police Patrol commander, Jason Larter, says so far the ordinance has not been a problem,"We have seen no increase or any incidents of where houses have been hit or peppered or people have been put in jeopardy."

Clint Walker has been a hunter for most of his life. He says if you are going to hunt in these areas, it's all about being responsible and aware of your surroundings. "It's just respecting the neighbors property, that's what it comes down to", Walker said, "there are lots of areas out here to hunt, you don't have to be in someone's backyard."

There is also land within Marana's town limits that is now open to hunting. The Marana Police say since the law went in to effect they too have not had any incidents of houses or people being hit by errant gun fire.

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