the latest information from the PTR for Patch 2.3 regarding hunters' ranged attacks is incorrect, as are the cries of multitudes who feel that hunters shooting close up would be unfairly overpowered. Drysc says:
There's a tooltip error, it should be "5-35 yards". We want melee and ranged to be kept separate, so that when in melee attack range you should not be able to use a ranged attack. There's some amount of 'give' there, especially in fast paced PvP which can produce some temporary gray area but that's fully known with this change.When I first saw the new "1-41" range for hunters (that's with the extended-range talent "Hawk Eye") over on World of Raids, I knew that something was wrong. To let hunters use melee and ranged attacks at the same time means that they would often do better up close to their enemies rather than far away, and would go against a lot of the fundamental concepts around which the class is based. As it is, the mechanic of switching between melee and ranged attacks is one of the exciting things about being a hunter, and, now that the deadzone is dying at last, there won't be that block of frustration getting in the way between the two.
Feeding the issue of the tooltip error is a bug currently where you can indeed range attack someone while being meleed, but that's in the process of being resolved as well.