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In This Issue
Turkey Hunting Applications Available for Canemount
Youth Turkey Hunting Applications Available for Canemount WMA
Prescribed Burning Begins in North Region
Prescribed Fire Workshop at Marion County WMA
Prescribed Fire Workshop at Black Prairie WMA
MDWFP and MSU to host Gamebird Workshops
There's Still Time to Take Advantage of Small Game Seasons
Small Game Hunting Opportunities at O'Keefe WMA
Fishing Regulation Changes Proposed for 2013
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MDWFP Update
February 2013

Turkey Hunting Applications Available for Canemount WMA


Canemount Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is located near Port Gibson in Claiborne County.  Canemount WMA includes approximately 3,500 acres of hardwood forests and turkeys are abundant.  Turkey hunters looking for a truly special hunting opportunity with a good chance of seeing and harvesting a gobbler should look no further than Canemount WMA.


During the 2013 hunting season, turkey hunting opportunities will be available through a draw hunt system open only to Mississippi residents 16 years of age or older.  There will be 14, 3-day hunts available from March 15 - May 1.  Only one hunter will be selected for each 3-day hunt.  Each drawn hunter may bring 1 hunting guest (2 persons per hunting party). During each 3-day hunt, the bag limit will be 1 adult gobbler. 


Hunters may apply for hunts at www.mdwfp.com/draws from January 18 - February 15 and there will be a $5 fee to apply.  Individuals randomly selected to hunt will be required to purchase an additional permit.  All hunters who are drawn are required to pay a $300 permit fee, and full payment must be made by February 26.  Hunters that do not complete full payment by February 26 will forfeit their permit and a second drawing will be held.  Hunting permits are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Youth Turkey Hunting Applications Available for Canemount WMA  


Youth turkey hunting opportunities at Canemount WMA will be available through a draw hunt system open to Mississippi residents 15 years of age or younger.  The youth turkey hunt will be March 9-10.  Youth hunters will be selected and randomly assigned to one of 6 designated hunt units on the WMA.  There will only be 1 youth hunter allowed in each hunt unit.  During the youth hunt, the bag limit will be 1 legal turkey per hunt. 


For more information about Canemount WMA, visit www.mdwfp.com/canemount.


wma turkey draw hunt  

Prescribed Burning Begins in North Region WMAs


Beginning in early February, prescribed burning will begin on designated areas on Charles Ray Nix, Sardis Waterfowl, Hell Creek, Divide Section, and Canal Section WMAs.  Prescribed burning conducted by the U.S. Forest Service may also take place on portions of Chickasaw and Upper Sardis WMAs.  The seasonal, controlled use of fire is essential to enhancing and maintaining habitat for numerous game and non-game species of wildlife.  Use of prescribed fire during late winter and early spring stimulates the growth of vegetation that serves as both food and cover for native wildlife while minimizing potential damage to timber. 


Prescribed burning during late summer through fall helps control undesirable encroachment of hardwood saplings in old fields and reduces thick vegetation which may impede wildlife use.  Prescribed fire is also used to prepare an area for subsequent application of selective herbicides to control undesirable vegetation and reduce fuel conditions to prevent hazardous wild fires.   


For more information about prescribed burning, please visit our website at www.mdwfp.com or call us at 601-432-2400. 

Prescribed Fire Workshop at Marion County WMA on February 16


The MDWFP, in cooperation with the Mississippi Prescribed Fire Council (MPFC), will host a prescribed burning workshop at Marion County WMA near Columbia, MS on Saturday, February 16, 2013. The MPFC partnership exists to promote the safe and legal use of prescribed burning for forest and wildlife management among private landowners and is comprised of federal, state, private organizations, and landowners.


The workshop, while developed for private landowners, is open to anyone interested in forest or wildlife management. The workshop will cover basic considerations for landowners interested in conducting prescribed burns and provide the opportunity to interact with experienced fire managers. Meeting topics will include benefits of prescribed burning; legal responsibilities; fire weather; smoke management; burning techniques; and developing prescribed burning plans. Participants will not receive prescribed burn certification during the workshop, but will learn how to become certified. If weather permits, a prescribed burn demonstration will be conducted. An additional training day will be arranged after the workshop for participants interested in receiving supervised, hands-on prescribed burning experience.


Registration is $10 and pre-registration is required by February 12. The meeting announcement, driving directions, and registration information can be found online at www.msfirecouncil.org. Individuals may also contact Russ Walsh at 601-408-3399 or wrwalsh@gmail.com for more information.

Prescribed Fire Workshop at Black Prairie WMA on March 2


Registration is $10 and pre-registration is required by February 25. The meeting announcement, driving directions, and registration information can be found online at www.msfirecouncil.org. Individuals may also contact Rick Hamrick at 662-617-1445 or rickh@mdwfp.state.ms.us for more information.

MDWFP and MSU to host Gamebird Workshops


The MDWFP and Mississippi State University (MSU) will host two workshops to teach participants how to better manage their land for bobwhite quail and wild turkeys. The one-day workshops will be held March 1, 2013 at Thompson Hall on the MSU Campus and March 8, 2013 at the Forrest County Extension Office in Hattiesburg. Topics to be covered include turkey and quail biology, habitat management, and the incorporation of wildlife management into profitable forestry and agricultural practices. Landowners will also learn about the impacts of predation on gamebird populations as well as the answers to commonly asked questions about pen-raised quail, supplemental feeding, food plots, and state laws that pertain to feeding.


Cost for the workshops is $30, which covers registration, materials, and lunch. Continuing education credits are available for registered foresters (5.5 Category 1-CF hours), loggers (5 Category 1 CLE hours), and wildlife biologists (6 Category 1 Contact hours). Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., and the programs run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.


These workshops are offered through the MSU College of Forest Resources, the MSU Extension Service and the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks. To register or for more information, visit www.cfr.msstate.edu/workshops/turkey/.

Gamebird workshop

There's Still Time to Take Advantage of Small Game Seasons


With deer season coming to an end, and turkey season still a few weeks away, there remains a wealth of available hunting opportunities.   Late winter is a great time to take advantage of the state's small game seasons and experience just how much fun small game hunting can be.  There are many devoted small game hunters who are well aware of these opportunities, but many other sportsmen often forget about the joys of pursuing late-season squirrels and rabbits.  Statewide squirrel and rabbit seasons remain open until February 28, 2013, and quail season remains open until March 2, 2013.


Small game hunting is a great way to get new hunters started, so take a new hunter along.  Hunters can move around while small game hunting, which is particularly appealing for many young hunters.  "Small game hunting is a great way for families to spend quality time together," says Dave Godwin, MDWFP Small Game Program Coordinator.  "Young people will remember those hunts fondly, and hopefully they will later share those same types of experiences with others."


For hunters with limited access to private land, there are a number of public land opportunities to hunt small game, including WMAs, National Forests, and National Wildlife Refuges.  Before going out, hunters should be familiar with hunting regulations, including those of any public lands they visit.



Small Game Hunting Opportunities at O'Keefe WMA


February is an excellent time to get out and enjoy small game hunting, and O'Keefe WMA offers great opportunities for late season squirrel hunting. Located near Lambert, in Quitman County, O'Keefe WMA is 5,914 acres in size and is one of the largest remaining tracts of contiguous bottomland hardwood forest in the Mississippi Delta. 


Squirrel hunting is done by stalking though the woods, sitting quietly and waiting for squirrels to come into range, or by using dogs to tree the squirrel. O'Keefe WMA offers excellent hunting access through several ATV and foot trails. 


The daily bag limit is 8 squirrels per hunter per day, and the season closes February 28, 2013. Legal weapons for small game hunting are shotguns using #2 shot or smaller, rifles or handguns no larger than .22 rimfire (which includes .22 magnums), muzzleloading rifles .40 caliber or smaller, and archery equipment using points other than broadheads.


All persons using O'Keefe and other WMAs, except those exempt from purchasing an annual hunting or fishing license, must carry on their person a valid statewide WMA User Permit. This permit is required in addition to the daily visitor use permit, a valid hunting license, and may be purchased wherever licenses are sold.


For more information about small game hunting opportunities, and/or rules and regulations, please visit our website at mdwfp.com-wildlife-hunting

Fishing Regulation Changes Proposed for 2013


The MDWFP Fisheries Bureau announced several proposed regulation changes for the upcoming fishing season. 


Length limits for black bass were proposed at the following lakes:

      Pickwick Lake: 15-inch minimum length limit

      Davis Lake: 18-22 inch slot limit with one bass allowed over 22 inches; 10 fish bag limit

      Moon Lake: Daily bag limit increased to 5 per day

      Lake Jeff Davis: 16-20 inch slot limit with one bass allowed over 20 inches; 15 fish bag limit


Additionally, anglers fishing the spillways of Aberdeen and Columbus lakes will be limited to fishing with one rod or pole per person; treble hooks will not be allowed in these spillways.


"Our fisheries biologists propose these regulation changes annually in preparation for the upcoming fishing season," said MDWFP Fisheries Bureau Director Ron Garavelli. "These regulations are an important tool that helps us provide quality fishing opportunities throughout the state."


Anyone wishing to comment on the proposed change may do so in writing to the Executive Director, Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, 1505 Eastover Dr., Jackson, MS 39211, no later than February 16, 2013. 

Crappie Tracking at Enid Lake


The fourth year of the cooperative crappie tracking project conducted by the University of Mississippi and the MDWFP is starting up again on Enid Lake. The goal is to learn more about  spawning areas of crappie in our local reservoirs.


The Ole Miss crappie research team, aided by guides John Woods and Tony Willis, recently tagged and released 35 crappie into Enid Lake. Radio transmitters were attached on the fish and orange identification tags with a contact number were secured to the dorsal fin. A new tag is being used this year that also records water depth and temperature at each fish location.  "It's very important that any angler who catches a tagged fish call the number on the tag, report the location and date of where the fish was caught, and return the transmitter (if the angler wants to keep the fish)," said Dr. Glenn Parsons. "We need to get the tag back so we can upload depth and temperature data, and we can only do that with the tag in hand" Parsons said.


Dr. Parsons and Dylan Williams will be tracking fish through late summer. The GPS locations of these fish will be posted on the MDWFP website and regularly updated.  "The things we are learning through this project are important for having a better crappie fishery," Parsons said. If you catch a tagged crappie, call Dylan Williams at (662) 501-6547 or Dr. Glenn Parsons at (662) 202-8013.

2013 Youth Art Contest


Students across Mississippi are invited to get outdoors and participate in the 2013 North Mississippi Fish Hatchery Youth Art Contest. Each student must submit a portfolio including entry form and artwork to the North Mississippi Fish Hatchery Visitor Education Center (NMFH VEC) by May 15, 2013.


The contest is sponsored by the Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Foundation (MWFPF). Winners in four age categories will have their work included in the Mississippi Outdoors magazine and posted on the MWFPF website. First place winners will receive a complimentary copy of the magazine displaying their work.


For more information on entry forms and rules please visit the MWFPF website at www.foundationmwfp.com or call the NMFH VEC at (662) 563 - 8068.


The NMFH VEC is part of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks and is located at Exit 233 east off I-55.   

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