New Mexico state law requires sportsmen to obtain written permission prior to hunting, fishing or trapping on posted private property (NMSA 30-14-1). Violation of this statute is a misdemeanor offense and could lead to a revocation of hunting and fishing privileges for up to three years. Ignorance is no excuse, it is your responsibility to know the law and your location at all times.
New Mexico Department of Game and Fish encourages all hunters and anglers to use courtesy cards (see link below). By exchanging information on a courtesy card, a positive landowner-sportsman contact is established. Landowners are much more likely to all allow access if they have the names and vehicle descriptions of sportsmen.
Please respect landowners’ private property.
Knowing Makes All the Difference
It is trespassing if . . .
• A person enters private property that is legally posted and they do not have written permission to be there. This includes stream and river bottoms located in private property.
• A person enters private property even though they know that permission to be there has been denied or withdrawn. This applies whether the property is posted or not.
• A person remains on private property after they have been asked to leave by the landowner or person in control of the property. This applies whether the property is posted or not.
• A person enters or stays on property owned or controlled by the State knowing that permission to do so has been denied.
It is not trespassing if . . .
• A person with a valid license enters private property whose owner has entered into an agreement with the New Mexico Game and Fish to allow the public to lawfully hunt, trap or fish.
• A person with a valid license is hunting on private property with a private land license that was issued for that particular property.
• A person with a valid license is lawfully hunting, fishing or trapping on state trust land that is included in an easement between New Mexico State Game Commission and the Commissioner of Public Lands.
• Criminal trespass under Chapter 30-14-1, NMSA 1978 is a misdemeanor.
• Fines up to $1,000 and up to 364 days in jail, and up to twice the value of damaged property.
• If a person trespasses while involved in hunting, trapping or fishing activities he/she will have his/her hunting, trapping and fishing privileges revoked for at least three years.
• If a person damages any private property while trespassing he/she will be civilly responsible to the owner for the damages for twice the value of the damage.
• If a person removes, damages or tampers with a “No Trespass” sign he/she is guilty of a petty misdemeanor which could result in a fine of $500 and six months in jail, unless the damage to the signs is more than $1,000 whereupon he/she will be guilty of a misdemeanor which could result in a fine of $1,000 and 364 days in the county jail.