Texas Creek/River Hunting Illegal?
I talked to Hal from AustinDiggers today at Starr and he said all creek/river hunting of artifacts is now illegal in Texas. I knew it's illegal to collect from state/federal waterways but Hal says now illegal in all waterways. Includes sand/gravel bars etc. Anyone know whats up with this? This potentialy makes a lot of you East Texas hunters poachers if true. We need to be vocal and vigilant or we'll all be made criminals!
01-19-2012 10:19 PM
That has been the case ever since the Antiquities Code was revised in 1996. However, no one I have ever talked to has ever seriously suggested enforcing it in river or creek beds (incidentally, it only applies in "public waterways", and the definition thereof in state law is very poorly defined, so there is always wiggle room!). They can't even enforce it on the lakes, which are much smaller and can be patrolled by boat (which most Texas rivers and creeks can't). Another example of a stupid law that is pretty much ignored by everybody.
MM, didn't you find that SMH in a creek in Travis County? we all have! It is very poorly defined like Indy said! It's a joke, in my book! Rescueing artifacts out of lakes should be very legal, it's not like they flooded and ruined those sites anyway! Right? Indy has been working on a bill for the State that would help Lake and Creek hunters alike! Indy, I've stated before, like others, that if you need help or support in Austin just let us know!
You may all go to Hell, I'm goin to Texas!! D. Crockett
yea, another uninforceable law on the books. Anything in life that one enjoys there is a nepharious little beaurocrat sitting in an office somewhere trying to figure out how to screw you out of what little enjoyment one can get!
Tribal Council Member
This is off one of the BLMs web sites in California seems you can obtain a permit to rock hound hmmm maybe the same in Texas . Just saying
El Centro Field Office
Rockhounding is one of many recreational pursuits on 14 1/2 million acres of lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in California. Collecting small, non-commercial quantities of rock by rockhounds is allowed free of charge on lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management. Commercial collecting for the purpose of sale or barter is not allowed without special authorization. Rockhounds may use hand tools such as shovels and picks, but must not use explosives or power equipment for excavation.
Rockhounds are welcome to collect limited amounts of rocks, minerals, and gemstones from most federal lands, but there are some exceptions. Some lands are withdrawn or reserved for certain purposes such as outstanding natural areas, research natural areas, recreation sites, national historic sites, etc. Other lands are not open to collecting due to the presence of mining claims. The local BLM offices can provide you with information about available collecting areas and those areas that are closed to rockhounding including any fire or vehicle use restrictions.
Petrified wood is available for collection on a free use basis in limited quantities as long as the collection is for personal, non-commercial purposes. According to Federal regulations (43 CFR 3622), free use collection weights are limited to 25 pounds plus one piece per day, not to exceed 250 pounds in one calendar year, and no specimen greater than 250 pounds may be collected without a special permit. The petrified wood must be for personal use only, and shall not be sold or bartered to commercial dealers. A material sale contract must be obtained from a BLM Field Office for collection of more than 250 pounds a year, or for commercial use. Mining claims may not be staked for petrified wood.
HISTORIC ARTIFACTS AND FOSSILS
The Antiquities Act of 1906, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, and the Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979 prohibit the excavation, collection or destruction of any archaeological materials (including fossils) located on lands under federal jurisdiction. The indiscriminate removal of artifacts and certain fossils could affect scientific and educational uses of public lands creating unfortunate gaps in scientific understanding. Petroglyphs, human remains, dwellings, and artifacts of Native American cultures are protected by law because they are integral to the preservation of the cultural heritage of these ongoing traditions and also may provide important information concerning populations who lived here long ago. For more information on the collection of fossils, please download the following brochure "They Walked Here Long Ago" or visit Paleontology.
Indy's right. Anything navigable if public, or state land if you will, and is covered under the antiquity code. If not public its private, and without permission you are guilty of trespassing. I'm sure picking up artifacts while trespassing is a capital crime. With permission you are fine.
Of course, it is not against the law to pick up FOSSILS from public waterways in Texas . . . Just sayin'!!
I'm always FOSSIL hunting!! I just never find fossils...?
I can find fossils on every trip - sometimes they are these weird pointy ones, with scars all over them like they've been flaked or something!
Tribal Council Member
What if the material that an artifact is made from has fossils or fossiliferous inclusions suspended within it? Many do, albeit in minute form. Maybe some more wiggle room there ifso. Wonder what a judge would think of that argument?!
Maybe next time zig before you zag !