In an attempt to gather better information regarding how game populations respond to management activities and hunter harvest, Melvern Wildlife Area and Lyon State Fishing Lake will require daily hunting permits beginning Sept. 1. Melvern Wildlife Area is a popular destination for many hunters and provides more than 10,000 acres of public hunting for a variety of game, including white-tailed deer, wild turkey, bobwhite quail, and waterfowl. Providing high-quality habitat for each of these game species and a superior experience for the hunters pursuing them requires the best tools and information available, and data gleaned from these permits will help area biologists with their habitat management plans.
The hunting permit will be free and required for anyone hunting on these wildlife areas for any species of game. A new permit must be filled out and returned each day. Permits can be obtained at 10 locations on Melvern Wildlife Area and two locations on Lyon State Fishing Lake. At these locations, permits will be stored in metal boxes called “iron rangers,” which are similar to mailboxes.
Prior to hunting, hunters will fill out the top portion of the card and deposit it in the iron ranger. The bottom portion must be kept on their person while hunting. When the hunter is finished for the day, the bottom portion should be filled out and returned to an iron ranger. The information collected will be used to help direct management in the future. Additionally, these permits will provide much-needed information regarding game population trends on the area as well as hunter preferences, participation, success, and satisfaction with their hunting experience.
When the fall hunting season finally arrives, remember to stop by an iron ranger prior to hunting Melvern Wildlife Area or Lyon State Fishing Lake and fill out a permit. Cooperation and participation in this new program will help the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism collect valuable information to ensure a high-quality hunting experience for future generations. For more information, phone the Melvern Wildlife Area Office at 620-699-3372.