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Idaho Fish and Game

No Bait or Salt for Deer and Elk

As big game hunting activity picks up, Fish and Game reminds hunters that the use of bait, including salt, to attract deer or elk for the purposes of hunting is prohibited. In addition to being illegal, this type of hunting clearly violates fair chase ethics because it takes advantage of an unnatural condition created by the hunter. Pursuing an animal in its natural environment and overcoming its senses is referred to as fair chase. This concept is the basis for many fish and game laws. Questions about the legality of baiting deer and elk have come up more often recently, possibly because baiting is legal and popular in some states in the east and midwest. According to Idaho law, the use of bait to hunt or take big game animals other than black bear is unlawful. Bait is defined as any substance placed to attract big game animals, except liquid scent for deer and elk. The use of salt placed to attract elk or deer for hunting is considered bait and is illegal. Anyone that witnesses or has information about any fish and game violation is encouraged to contact their local conservation officer, county sheriff's office, or call the Citizens Against Poaching (CAP) at 1-800-632-5999. People with information leading to a citation can be eligible for a cash reward.