Originally Posted by Sfury
Interesting. I consider rabbits, squirrels, prairie dogs, and all other small woodlands critters to be varmints. Even coyotes can fall into that category. That's pretty typical of what we view as varmints here in Wisconsin at any rate.
What do you think varmints are? I'm just wondering is all, and mean no disrespect.
The distinction is probably tied more to game regulations than it is popular definition. Most states require you to possess a "small game" license to hunt rabbits and squirrels, and there are often restrictions on when they may be taken. As well, many states also classify "varmints" separately as those predators and pests (like prairie dogs and coyotes) which may be taken without a license and at any time throughout the year. Just to confuse things, there are often other classifications like "furbearers" and "trophy game" with specific licensing requirements and set seasons - possibly covering the remainder of the "small woodland critters" you may be referring to.
So, while it might be a popular label, you'd be wise to think twice before shooting that cottontail, weasel, bobcat, or muskrat thinking of them as varmints out this way - any of them would get you a citation if you don't have a proper license. I've not hunted Wisconsin though, so your DNR's rules and definitions may differ.