MSPCA-Angell Headquarters

350 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130
(617) 522-7400
Email Us

Angell Animal Medical Centers – Boston

350 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130
(617) 522-7282
angellquestions@angell.org
More Info

Angell West

293 Second Avenue, Waltham, MA 02451
(781) 902-8400
For on-site assistance (check-ins and pick-ups):
(339) 970-0790
angellquestions@angell.org
More Info

Angell at Essex

565 Maple Street, Danvers, MA 01923
(978) 304-4648
essex@angell.org
More Info

Animal Care and Adoption Centers – Boston

350 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130
(617) 522-5055
More Info

Animal Care and Adoption Centers – Cape Cod

1577 Falmouth Road, Centerville, MA 02632
(508) 775-0940
More Info

Animal Care and Adoption Centers – Nevins Farm

400 Broadway, Methuen, MA 01844
(978) 687-7453
More Info

Animal Care and Adoption Centers – Northeast Animal Shelter

347 Highland Ave., Salem, MA 01970
(978) 745-9888
More Info

Donate Now

Donate

More Ways to Donate

From an online gift to a charitable gift annuity, your contribution will have a significant impact in the lives of thousands of animals.

Sunday Hunting Legislation

H. 781, H. 800, H. 877, H. 912, H. 920, H. 925 and S. 500: Sunday hunting legislation

MSPCA Position: Oppose
Sponsors: Representatives DeCoste (H. 781); Frost (H. 800), Pease (H. 877), Sullivan-Almeida (H. 912), Vieira (H. 920) and Zlotnik (H. 925); Senator Anne Gobi (S. 500)

Status: Referred to the Joint Committee on Environment and Natural Resources. Hearing held November 29, 2023. (Watch the hearing.)


Every year a number of bills are filed that would eliminate in whole or part the more than 100-year old statewide ban on Sunday hunting. The public highly values the one day of the week during hunting season when they can enjoy our natural resources without having to worry about conflicts with hunting activities. A 2022 representative survey found that 1.5 times more Massachusetts voters support the Sunday hunting ban than oppose it. Hunters represent just 1% of the Massachusetts population and have six out of the seven days of the week, including half of the weekend, to hunt.

For Massachusetts residents, Sundays are a day of respite to enjoy activities such as hiking, bird watching, horseback riding, mountain biking, and other wildlife-related activities without concerns about conflict with hunting activity. Tragically, hunting accidents can and do happen. For example:

With Massachusetts being the third most densely populated state in the country, it is likely precisely because we have this ban that more incidents do not occur.

Further, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service data show that non-hunting nature lovers not only outnumber, but also outspend, hunting constituencies by fourteen times each year in the Commonwealth. Non-consumptive nature lovers spend $1.28 billion on wildlife watching while hunting constituencies spend a fraction of that figure—just 7%, or $87 million.

Though arguments have been made that permitting Sunday hunting would address human-wildlife conflicts, these assertions are not true. MassWildlife data show that, on average, a total of 1,334 deer were killed during the archery season’s Saturdays from 2013 through 2018. This amounts to about 1% of the current deer population—hardly enough to control the deer population or mitigate conflicts. In addition, and contrary to popular belief, deer hunting does not lower the incidence of Lyme disease or control tick populations. According to leading Lyme disease experts, including Dr. Richard Ostfeld, human risk of exposure to Lyme disease is correlated with the abundance of immature rodent hosts and their food resources, not deer numbers.

In the interest of fairness, and also in the interest of protecting public safety, it is entirely reasonable for Massachusetts, the third most densely populated state in the nation, to uphold this law—a law that allows non-consumptive nature users to enjoy our natural resources with their families, friends, and companion animals for one day a week during hunting season without risking conflicts with hunting activity.

More Information

Co-Sponsors

This list represents anyone who has signed on to co-sponsor any of the seven pieces of legislation above. Click on the bill number above to see a list of legislators who specifically signed on to that bill.

State Senators:

Name District/Address
Sen. Patrick M. O’Connor Plymouth and Norfolk
Sen. Anne M. Gobi Worcester, Hampden, Hampshire and Middlesex
Sen. Ryan C. Fattman Worcester and Hampden

State Representatives:

Name District/Address
Alyson M. Sullivan 7th Plymouth
Patrick Joseph Kearney 4th Plymouth
William M. Straus 10th Bristol
David T. Vieira 3rd Barnstable
Joseph D. McKenna 18th Worcester
Susan Williams Gifford 2nd Plymouth
Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr. 12th Hampden
Kelly W. Pease 4th Hampden
Steven S. Howitt 4th Bristol
Colleen M. Garry 36th Middlesex
David K. Muradian, Jr. 9th Worcester
Timothy R. Whelan 1st Barnstable
Michael J. Soter 8th Worcester
David F. DeCoste 5th Plymouth
Patricia A. Duffy 5th Hampden
Donald R. Berthiaume, Jr. 5th Worcester
David Allen Robertson 19th Middlesex
Paul K. Frost 7th Worcester
Christopher Hendricks 11th Bristol
Kelly W. Pease 4th Hampden
Norman J. Orrall 12th Bristol
James C. Arena-DeRosa 8th Middlesex
Jeffrey Rosario Turco 19th Suffolk
Rep. Patrick Joseph Kearney 4th Plymouth

Join the Animal Action Team to stay up to date on animal issues across the Commonwealth.

Advocacy Puppy