PA antler restrictions are based on the Wildlife management unit you are hunting. I beleive the western part of the state requires atleast 4 points on a side of the deer. Each point must be atleast 1 inch long, excluding the main beam which is counted as a point no matter the length. The rest of the state is 3 points on a side
The fine is kind of hard to define. If you are able to prove to you made a mistake and really thought the deer was legal, then the fine is not to bad. I think maybe $100 dollars. I could be wrong. The problem is though is though you give a statement to an officer and they decide if you are telling the truth or not. He they believe you just simply shot the buck without trying to judge points the fine can be much worse. I am talking a lot of money.
I believe the minimum fine was $25 and surrender the rack for a mistake. They had guys bringing in spikes basically saying here's my $25 f*** your antler restrictions. Yea they paid the $500 fine and surrender deer.
ORIGINAL: charlie 01
I just feel sorry for the guy who is only a meat hunter, and would shoot any kind of antlered deer. But does not care to shoot a doe so the herd can grow some. He is sadly caught up in this antler restriction that he really does not want to partake in, but has to watch those bucks that he can't shoot, just walk on by. And hey, how many chances does a guy get to take a deer.
The thing people don't get is that it is the same thing...
My family has hunted PA annually beginning 8 years before APR's and on our 8th year since APR's. So I have a very clear view of what has happened since the changes.
Without getting longwinded, spikes 15 years ago are 8 points now, you have equal opportunity to see and shoot a legal buck now as you did before APR's(if not better), just now it is an 8 instead of a spike, plus you get plenty more buck sightings which gets any new hunters blood pumping. Not to mention monsters are showing up everywhere. I could go on and on about how positive these changes have been. PA is also 1 buck, so it is a double whammy, APR's and 1 buck.
Let me put it this way, before the APR's I remember several years when I hunted the entire week and did not see one buck with any horns what so ever, not even spikes. This past year I kept a log, I saw 32 bucks, 6 were legal.
Don't feel bad for us PA hunters.