Waterfowl seasons set
by wildlife commission
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission (TWRC) at its August meeting, held at the UT West Tennessee Research Center, established the 2010-11 waterfowl hunting seasons.
The TWRC approved the proposals made by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA). The seasons reflect few changes from recent years. There will again be a 60-day season for duck hunting, with one split that would end Jan. 30, and a bag limit of six ducks. The maximum number of days allowed for goose hunting seasons under the federal framework will also be utilized.
The Statewide Zone duck hunting seasons are Nov. 27-28 and Dec. 4-Jan. 30, while hunting in the Reelfoot Zone will be held Nov. 13-14 and Dec. 4-Jan. 30. The seasons will maximize the number of weekends open to duck hunting and end on the latest date allowed (the Sunday closest to Jan. 31).
Habitat conditions in the Prairie Pothole region of the United States and Canada were slightly improved over last year. Overall duck populations were also up (both well above the long term average). Based on these conditions, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has offered a full season with no closed or partial seasons. The TWRA recommendations follow the maximum USFWS frameworks regarding duck bag limits. A daily bag limit of six ducks may include no more than four mallards (no more than two of which may be a hen), three wood ducks (during the late waterfowl season only), two scaup, two pintails (an increase from last year), one canvasback and one black duck. The daily bag limit of merganser would be five, only two of which may be hooded mergansers.
The maximum number of days allowed within in the federal framework for goose-hunting seasons will be in effect. Goose seasons are set as late as federal frameworks allow in order to take advantage of any migratory geese that may be available during late winter.
Season dates for Canada geese are Oct. 9-20, Nov. 27-28 and Dec. 4-Jan. 30 in the Statewide Zone. In the Northwest Zone, the dates are Dec. 4-Feb. 13. The daily bag limit is two per person.
The white-fronted goose season runs statewide from Dec. 4-Feb. 13. The daily bag limit is two per person.
Season dates and bag limits for light geese (snow, blue, Ross) are similar to last season, with a shift for the calendar. The standard season will run from Nov. 24 through Feb. 13 (standard regulations apply). Federal Conservation Order provisions allow the use of electronic calls and unplugged shotguns for the Feb. 14 through March 10, 2011 portion of the season. The daily bag limit of light geese is 20 per person, per day, during the conservation season.
The youth waterfowl season would indicate only a calendar shift from last year. For youth ages 6-15, the Statewide Zone dates are Feb. 5-6, while the Reelfoot Zone would be Feb. 12-13.
The TWRC will next meet Sept. 22-23 in Crossville. The location will be announced at a later date.
Hunter education class
set Sept. 7 at Cove Lake
Ken Cutsinger will lead a Tennessee Hunter Education course beginning Sept. 7 at 6 p.m. at Cove Lake State Park.
State law requires that anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1969 possess proof of satisfactory completion of an approved hunter education course before hunting in Tennessee.
In order to enroll in a hunter education class, a student must be at least 10 years old. Youngsters ages 6-9 may participate in Young Sportsman and WMA hunts without hunter education but must be accompanied by an adult at least 21 years old.
Participants need to bring a pencil and their Social Security number to class.