3rd White-tailed Deer Gun Season Opens December 24
Mississippi's 3rd white-tailed deer gun hunting season will open December 24th and will run through January 17th. Hunting with dogs is allowed during this season. Legal deer include either-sex on private lands and legal bucks only on open public lands. Open public lands may include National Forests and Corps of Engineers lands that have statewide seasons without special regulations. For seasons and bag limits on Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), please see the individual WMA regulations at www.mdwfp.com/wma.
Hunters are urged to practice good hunter ethics and follow all safety precautions to avoid hunting and firearm-related accidents. When hunting deer during any gun season on deer, a hunter must wear in full view at least five hundred square inches of solid unbroken fluorescent orange. This requirement does not apply while the hunter is in a fully enclosed deer stand.
All persons born on or after January 1, 1972, are required to complete a hunter education course before purchasing a Mississippi hunting license. Each resident of Mississippi age sixteen through sixty-four, must obtain a hunting license, except while hunting on lands titled in his/her name. Any resident sixty-five or older, or any resident otherwise exempt from obtaining a hunting license, must have documentation with him/her at all times while hunting. All non-resident hunters, except minors under the age of sixteen, are required to obtain a hunting license while hunting in the state of Mississippi. In addition to any required hunting license, purchase of a Wildlife Management Area User Permit is required prior to hunting on any Wildlife Management Area.
Graham Lake Re-opens on Pascagoula River WMA
Graham Lake Road on the Pascagoula River WMA has reopened after being closed several weeks due to flood damage. Graham Lake is a popular oxbow lake located just north of Wade-Vancleave Road near the Pascagoula River bridge. Flooding from Hurricane Isaac caused a section of the road near the bank of the river to completely wash into the river. MDWFP temporarily closed the road until needed repairs could be completed. Just recently, contractors hired by MDWFP re-routed the existing road away from the river bank to protect it from further damage.
Now, this popular access road is once again open to public use. The WMA visitors need to be aware that the WMA roads are periodically closed due to flooding, and visitors are encouraged to review the Pascagoula River WMA regulations for more information about WMA and road closures due to flooding.
For more information regarding Wildlife Management Areas in Mississippi, visit our website at www.mdwfp.com/wma or call us at 601-432-2199.
2012 MWFP Foundation Scholarship Awards Announced
On Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012 the Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Foundation announced the winners of the 2012 MWFP Foundation Scholarship Awards. Each year the Foundation grants scholarships through an open competitive system to worthy college students majoring in fields related to Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks. Details for the program can be found on the Foundation website: www.foundationmwfp.com.
This year 4 students were each awarded $3,000 for the 2012 program. The winners for this year are: (In photo left to right) Justyn Foth, James Holt, McKenzie Ray, and Michael Frew. The MWFP Foundation is a private 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which benefits projects and support for the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks.
MDWFP Announces Winner of Lifetime Sportsman License
The MDWFP today announced the winner of its Lifetime License drawing. Bobby L. Sherman of Louin, MS, is the recipient of a Resident Lifetime Sportsman License.
Mr. Sherman enjoys deer and turkey hunting in Jasper County, especially on Tallahala Wildlife Management Area. Another one of his favorite outdoor recreational activities is saltwater fishing for redfish, speckled trout, and flounder.
"This means a great deal to me," said Sherman. "I'm back and forth to the Mississippi Gulf coast every other weekend and hunt every free chance I get."
The drawing, sponsored by the Foundation for Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, was held on November 15, 2012. Participants who purchased a 2013 Sportsman License by midnight on November 14, 2012 were automatically entered into the drawing.
The Resident Lifetime Sportsman License is a $1,000 value and includes the Sportsman, WMA User Permit, and Saltwater privileges.
The hunting and fishing license fee system is the primary method of financing the management and protection of wildlife and their habitats and ensuring the continued efforts of conservation in Mississippi for generations to come.
Youth Squirrel Hunting Opportunity Available at Natchez State Park
Youth hunters will have the opportunity to hunt squirrels on Natchez State Park for the first time ever this season. Natchez State Park, located off Highway 61 in Adams County, is known for its quality deer and youth turkey hunting. However, beginning this season, squirrel hunting will be added to the list of opportunities available at Natchez State Park.
Squirrel hunting will be allowed by special permit draw only. Youth hunters age 15 and younger may apply online at www.mdwfp.com/draws. The application period will open December 1 and close December 31, 2012. Hunting will be allowed each Saturday and Sunday in February. Youth hunters must be in the presence and under the direct supervision of a licensed or exempt adult at least 21 years of age while hunting on Natchez State Park. Please review the Natchez State Park regulations and map at www.mdwfp.com/wma for full information on hunting at Natchez State Park.
Hunters Encouraged to "Take a Friend Hunting" this Year
The MDWFP has again launched its "Take a Friend Hunting" campaign. The initiative is aimed at encouraging hunters to pass down the tradition of hunting by introducing someone new to the sport.
Hunting is a great way to connect with family and friends and is an important part of conserving wildlife. Small game hunting, in particular, provides a wonderful opportunity to introduce new hunters to the heritage of hunting. It offers an easy, cost effective, and accessible opportunity to begin hunting. Apprentice hunting licenses for first-time hunters are available online at mdwfp.com or anywhere hunting and fishing licenses are sold.
The MDWFP encourages hunters to take on the role of mentor this season and share their passion of hunting with at least one new hunter. Hunters can make this commitment by visiting mdwfp.com and signing the "Take a Friend Hunting" pledge and receive their free "Take a Friend Hunting" car decal.