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Old December 8, 2018, 03:52 PM   #1
Old Stony
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Shooting lead in Kalifornia

Just a little curiosity on my part. It's my understanding that after the 1st of the year it will be against the law in Kalifornia to fire any projectiles with lead in them. I was wondering if this is the case, are muzzleloaders just out of business or possibly not considered firearms in the crazy state. If they are considered firearms there, it would seem that round balls or mini balls would be illegal?
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Old December 8, 2018, 06:07 PM   #2
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Was just looking long and hard for anything pertaining to this new rule, and I managed to dig up a lot.

Summary: The banning of lead ammunition seems to be only in effect in hunting lands, with specific intent to "protect the condor population". The law is actually implemented in 3 stages, from 2008, to 2015, and finally, a full ban on July 1st, 2019, but only on land used for hunting. Target and defensive ammunition does not seem to be affected, unless you are using them...again, on hunting grounds.

Summary for muzzleloaders: For hunting, it seems like the only options available would be sabot rounds loaded with non-lead alloy bullets. No PRB's and no minies and no BP revolvers. Expect an increase of business in modern in-line and 209-ignition rifles in this state. For target shooting and those who carry black powder revolvers for defense or Old West competitive events, nothing will be affected, hopefully.

Here are some snippets from the coverage of this law:

Effective July 1, 2008, the California Fish and Game Commission modified the methods of take to prohibit the use of projectiles containing lead when hunting big game and nongame species in an area designated as the California condor range.

In October 2013, Assembly Bill 711 was signed into law requiring the use of nonlead ammunition when taking any wildlife with a firearm in California. This law requires the Commission to adopt by July 1, 2015, regulations that phase-in the statute’s requirements, but it must be fully implemented by July 1, 2019.

CDFW conducted extensive public outreach during 2014 and proposed regulations that phase-in the nonlead requirement. This outreach effort included question and answer sessions at sportsmen’s shows, meetings with hunting organizations and a series of eight public workshops throughout the state. CDFW then presented draft regulations, as modified by public input from these workshops, to the Fish and Game Commission.
•Phase 1 – Effective July 1, 2015, nonlead ammunition required when taking Nelson bighorn sheep and all wildlife on state wildlife areas and ecological reserves.
•Phase 2 – Effective July 1, 2016, nonlead shot required when taking upland game birds with a shotgun, except for dove, quail, snipe, and any game birds taken on licensed game bird clubs. In addition, nonlead shot required when using a shotgun to take resident small game mammals, furbearing mammals, nongame mammals, nongame birds, and any wildlife for depredation purposes.
•Phase 3 – Effective July 1, 2019, nonlead ammunition will be required when taking any wildlife with a firearm anywhere in California
***Note the red highlighted text***

This is from the Q&A section:
What about target shooting or firearms for personal protection?

The regulations do not require use of nonlead ammunition when target shooting. Use of lead projectiles for target shooting is legal unless CDFW or another government entity has determined otherwise for lands they administer. The regulations do not prohibit the possession of concealable firearms containing lead ammunition, provided the firearm is possessed for personal protection and is not used to take or assist in the take of wildlife. With the exception of ammunition for concealable firearms possessed for personal protection, hunters may not possess lead ammunition along with a firearm capable of firing that ammunition in locations where nonlead ammunition is required.
Keep in mind though, AFTER JULY 1, 2019, AIR RIFLE AMMUNITION is among the items covered by the ban. If you are using an air rifle to hunt varmints on your own land, even though your land may not be under the condor-protection umbrella, you still would not be able to use lead pellets.

If you want the full article regarding the condor-protection program and how the lead-ban will affect your HUNTING activity, the page can be found here:

They may or may not still have a coupon program in effect where you can exchange your non-approved ammunition for state-approved products when using them to hunt on protected ground.
Climb onto the saddle and ride with me through the last remaining Wild West frontier in the world. Where a man is judged solely by his actions, and every action carries grave consequences.

Last edited by Rachen; December 8, 2018 at 06:43 PM.
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