Firearms Deer Sea­son Opens Oc­to­ber 18

The Covington News - - Agriculture -

SO­CIAL CIR­CLE, Ga. - It is fi­nally that time of the year again for Ge­or­gia hun­ters. Firearms deer sea­son opens Satur­day, Oct. 18 and goes through Jan. 1 in the North­ern Zone and Jan. 15 in the South­ern Zone. Last year, more than 276,000 li­censed hun­ters har­vested over 300,000 deer.

“Reg­u­lated hunt­ing is the most cost ef­fec­tive and ef­fi­cient means of manag­ing the deer herd,” says John Bow­ers, Ge­or­gia Depart­ment of Nat­u­ral Re­sources, Wildlife Re­sources Divi­sion as­sis­tant chief of Game Man­age­ment. “In ad­di­tion, sports­men and women pro­vide more than $30 mil­lion each year to fund wildlife con­ser­va­tion in the state through li­cense fees and self- im­posed ex­cise taxes col­lected on the pur­chase of firearms, am­mu­ni­tion, archery equip­ment and fish­ing equip­ment.”

The divi­sion man­ages more than 90 wildlife man­age­ment ar­eas, com­pris­ing nearly one mil­lion acres of pub­lic hunt­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties. For just $19/year, res­i­dent hun­ters can pur­chase a WMA li­cense and hunt on th­ese lands. Ge­or­gia’s WMAs pro­vide a va­ri­ety of hunt­ing op­tions, in­clud­ing archery, prim­i­tive weapons, mod­ern firearms, adult-child hunts, ladies-only hunts and hunts for the phys­i­cally dis­abled.

All hun­ters should read the 2008-2009 Ge­or­gia Hunt­ing Sea­sons and Reg­u­la­tions an­nual guide, avail­able at www.go­hunt­ge­or­gia.com or from li­cense agents, for any spe­cial county reg­u­la­tions, in­clud­ing ei­ther-sex days and antler re­stric­tions and for spe­cific WMA reg­u­la­tions.

All of Ge­or­gia’s pub­lic lands open to hunt­ing are mapped out as a line map, topo­graph­i­cal map and a color in­frared map (with many larger ar­eas di­vided up by tract for eas­ier view­ing) and now are eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble on­line at www.go­hunt­ge­or­gia.com. Search for maps by their ge­o­graphic lo­ca­tion or al­pha­bet­i­cally by the name of the Wildlife Man­age­ment Area, Nat­u­ral Area or Her­itage Pre­serve.

The sea­son bag limit re­mains at 10 antler­less deer and two antlered bucks. One of the two bucks must have at least four points (one inch or longer) on one side of the antlers. There are no other statewide antler re­stric­tions. All deer hun­ters must wear at least 500 square-inches of flu­o­res­cent or­ange above the waist to legally hunt dur­ing firearms sea­son, ex­cept on archery-only ar­eas.

Deer hun­ters us­ing mod­ern firearms must pos­sess a valid hunt­ing li­cense, a big game li­cense and a cur­rent deer har­vest record. If hunt­ing on a WMA, hun­ters also must pos­sess a WMA li­cense. Hunt­ing li­censes are avail­able on­line at www.go­hunt­ge­or­gia.com, at over 1,000 li­cense agents or by call­ing 1-888-748-6887.

For more in­for­ma­tion on firearms deer sea­son, visit www. go­hunt­ge­or­gia.com, con­tact a WRD Game Man­age­ment of­fice or call (770) 918-6416

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