The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a proposal to open Caddo Lake National Wildlife Refuge in Texas to big game hunting for the first time. The Service has also proposed expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at a number of other national wildlife refuges across the nation. Notice of the proposal was published in the Federal Register on September 15, 2010; the public has until October 15, 2010, to provide comments.
The other proposed changes are:
•Modoc National Wildlife Refuge, California, would open additional acreage for migratory bird hunting.
•Cape May National Wildlife Refuge, New Jersey, would open for upland game and turkey hunting.
•Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge, Nebraska, would open for big game hunting.
•Deep Fork National Wildlife Refuge, Oklahoma, would open additional acreage for big game hunting.
•Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico, would expand hunting opportunities to allow turkey hunting for the first time.
•Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Virginia, would increase areas open for fishing.
•Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Minnesota, would both expand acreage for hunting and add species of migratory birds and upland game.
While definitions of hunting categories vary by refuge and state, migratory bird hunting generally includes ducks and geese. Upland game hunting may cover such animals as game birds, rabbit, squirrel, opossum and coyote. Big game hunting may include such animals as wild turkey, deer and feral hogs.
Under the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, the Service can permit hunting and fishing along with four other types of wildlife-dependent recreation where they are compatible with refuge purpose and mission. Hunting, within specified limits, is permitted on more than 300 national wildlife refuges. Fishing is permitted on more than 270 national wildlife refuges. Other wildlife-dependent recreation on national wildlife refuges includes wildlife photography, environmental education, wildlife observation and interpretation.
Source: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Title: Waterfowl Hunting
Publisher: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Rights Public domain