With many of the state’s bird hunting seasons opening Oct. 5, hunters need to know that national wildlife refuges are currently closed to hunting due to the federal government shutdown.

Summer Lake and other state wildlife areas are not affected by the shutdown and remain open to hunting. State wildlife areas owned or managed by ODFW include Summer Lake Wildlife Area, Coyote Springs, Power City, Irrigon, Willow Creek, Denman, EE Wilson, Fern Ridge, Klamath, Ladd Marsh, Sauvie Island and other areas listed on page 36 of the Oregon Game Bird Regulations.

National wildlife refuges typically open to hunting but closed during the federal government shutdown are listed on page 31 of the Oregon Game Bird Regulations and are: Bandon Marsh, Cold Springs, Julia Butler Hansen, Hart Mt, Klamath Marsh, Lower Klamath and Upper Klamath, Lewis and Clark, Malheur, McKay Creek, Snake River Islands of Deer Flat, and Umatilla.

Bird hunters using areas near these refuges can use www.oregonhuntingmap.com to understand refuge boundaries.

Duck season opens in most of eastern Oregon this Saturday, Oct. 5, along with goose hunting in southeast Oregon. Hunting for chukar, pheasant, and Hungarian partridge also open statewide on Oct. 5, along with quail in eastern Oregon. Western Oregon and Columbia Basin duck and southwest Oregon goose hunting open the following Saturday, Oct. 12.

How big game hunters are affected by federal government shutdown

Big game hunters are more likely to hunt on national forest and BLM lands than national wildlife refuges.

National forests and BLM land remain open to hunting. However, developed campgrounds on these lands are closed and all other services are unavailable.

Rifle deer season continues in much of eastern Oregon through Oct. 9. Western Oregon rifle deer hunting continues through Nov. 1, with a break in the Cascades for Cascade elk season (Oct. 12-18). Other rifle elk seasons happen from mid-October through November.

Canvasback bag limit error in printed regulations

Finally, duck hunters are reminded of an error in the “What’s New in 2013-2014” section at the top of page six of the printed 2013-14 Oregon Game Bird Regulations. The canvasback daily bag limit within the daily duck bag limit should be two, not three. So the third bullet point at the top of page six should read “The canvasback daily bag limit has been increased to two.”

The canvasback daily bag limit is correct on page 16 of the regulations. It has also been corrected in the online version of the 2013-2014 Oregon Game Bird Regulations: http://www.dfw.state.or.us/resources/hunting/upland_bird/docs/2013-14_oregon_game_bird_regs.pdf

Logo courtesy Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

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