Firearms deer season opens Oct. 20

Mon, 10/15/2007 - 12:11pm
By: The Citizen

Lease one million acres of prime hunting land for just $19/year

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 12, 2007) — It’s the most popular time of year again for Georgia hunters. Firearms deer hunting season is just around the corner, and according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD), 94 percent of deer hunters in Georgia pursue the species using modern firearms.

The season opens Saturday, Oct. 20 and runs through Jan. 1, 2008 in the Northern Zone. In the Southern Zone the season runs through Jan. 15, 2008.

“Regulated hunting is the most cost effective and efficient means of managing the deer herd,” says WRD Assistant Chief of Game Management John Bowers. “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.”

Last year, 241,971 licensed hunters harvested 319,377 deer. Each year, hunters take advantage of the extensive public hunting land available in Georgia. WRD currently manages more than 90 wildlife management areas (WMAs), consisting of more than one million acres of prime hunting opportunity. For a mere $19/year, hunters can purchase a WMA license and reap the rewards of the state’s expansive hunting opportunities.

“The annual WMA license is a bargain for deer hunters,” says WRD Senior Wildlife Biologist Brandon Anderson. “It is the ticket to the best value hunting club in the state of Georgia — over 1 million acres of land for $19 per year.”

Georgia’s one million acres of 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. Sportsmen and women also can hunt on open National Forest land, in accordance with state regulations and county restrictions. WMA regulations apply on WMAs located on National Forest land. Hunters must obtain written permission from the landowner prior to hunting on private land.

All hunters should check the 2007-2008 Georgia Hunting Seasons and Regulations annual guide, available at or from license agents, for any special county regulations, including either-sex days and antler restrictions.

Hunters also should note that the season bag limit remains at 10 does and two antlered bucks. Regarding the buck limit, one of the two must have at least four points (one inch or longer) on one side of the antlers. There are no additional antler restrictions except in counties with special 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 within WMAs or archery-only counties.

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, at over 1,000 license agents or by calling 1-888-748-6887.

For more information on firearms deer season, visit the WRD website at, contact a WRD Game Management Office or call (770) 918-6416.

Governor Perdue proclaims the opening day of firearms deer season as “TIP” day in Georgia

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 12, 2007) — Governor Sonny Perdue recently signed a proclamation designating Saturday, Oct. 20, 2007, the opening day of modern firearms season for deer hunting, as Turn In Poachers (TIP) Day in Georgia.

The mission of TIP, Inc., a non-profit organization, is to protect wildlife from poachers by increasing public support for wildlife law enforcement, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD).

“The ownership of all wildlife is by the state of Georgia. It is held in trust for all Georgians to enjoy,” proclaims Gov. Perdue. “A poacher is one who takes wildlife illegally thereby depriving other citizens of our state’s natural resources.”

TIP creates a framework to promote ethical hunting and to promote the conservation of natural resources. Georgians are encouraged to contact the TIP hotline when they witness a poaching violation. This information is forwarded to WRD for further investigation. If a tip leads to an arrest, TIP pays a reward to the individual who reported the violation. Callers to TIP can remain anonymous if desired.

Poaching violations include hunting during illegal hours, taking over the limit of wildlife and/or fish, hunting or fishing in unauthorized areas, killing deer illegally, hunting over bait, buying or selling wildlife or game fish, killing or being in possession of nongame/endangered species, stocking wildlife, hunting or fishing by illegal methods and more.

Georgia citizens can help fight poaching by calling the TIP hotline. This line can be reached by dialing 1-800-241-4113 outside metro-Atlanta or (404) 656-4863 inside metro-Atlanta or by calling *DNR for Cingular callers or by sending an email to

Callers should try to obtain the following information:

· A description of the violator

· A description of their vehicle

· The location of the violation

· Date and time of the violation

· The type of violation

For more information, visit (select “General Information”, “Law Enforcement” and “Turn in Poachers and Polluters”), contact your local WRD Law Enforcement Office or call (770) 918-6414. To make a tax-deductible donation to support anti-poaching efforts, send a check made payable to TIP to: Turn In Poachers, Inc. 3423 Piedmont Road, NE, Suite 540, Atlanta, Ga., 30305.

For safe hunting, remember the ten commandments of firearms safety

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 12, 2007) — Georgia reported 48 hunting incidents, 21 of which involved firearms, for the previous 2006-2007 hunting season. With the opening of deer hunting firearms season, Oct. 20, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD) encourages all hunters to review the firearms safety tips below before heading to the woods this season.

“Ultimately, each hunter is responsible for keeping themselves and others safe while pursuing deer this year,” says WRD State Hunter Safety Coordinator Capt. James Bell. “This includes respecting all firearms and being absolutely certain of their target.”

The Ten Commandments of Firearms Safety is an excellent safety checklist, covered in all hunter education courses, and well worth a review by any hunter who utilizes firearms to hunt. The commandments are as follows:

1. Control the direction of the firearm’s muzzle. Keep the safety on and fingers off the trigger at all times until ready to shoot.

2. Identify the target and what is beyond it before shooting. Know the identifying features of the game hunted and be absolutely certain that what you are aiming at is that game.

3. Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.

4. Be sure the barrel and action are clear of obstructions and that only the proper size of ammunition is used in the firearm.

5. Always unload a firearm when it is not in use, leave the actions open, carry empty firearms in a case to and from shooting areas.

6. Never aim a firearm at anything that you do not intend to shoot. Avoid all horseplay with a firearm.

7. Never climb a tree or fence, or jump a ditch or log, with a loaded firearm. Never pull a firearm towards you by the muzzle.

8. Never shoot a bullet at a flat, hard surface or at water. Make sure backstops are adequate during target practice.

9. Store firearms and ammunition separately and beyond the reach of children and careless adults.

10. Avoid all alcoholic beverages and drugs before and during shooting.

For more information on firearms safety, visit or contact the WRD Hunter Education Office at (770) 761-3010.

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