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Primitive Weapons Season, Proposed Boating Regulations; More From Wildlife Resources Division

By   /   October 5, 2013  /   Comments

Special to the Journal

Following are four news releases from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division. Releases can be found online at www.georgiawildlife.com/news. DNR RSS news feeds: www.gadnr.org

Also follow Wildlife Resources Division through:
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• Georgia Wild, a free e-newsletter (www.georgiawildlife.com/news/e-newsletters )

For more information, contact
Melissa Cummings, Communications/Outreach Specialist – (706) 557-3326, Melissa.cummings@dnr.state.ga.us

SUMMARY OF RELEASES

1. Primitive Weapons Deer Hunting Season Opens Oct. 12
2. Hunting Safely During Primitive Weapons Season
3. Youth Hunter Education Challenge State Event Winners-Bulloch and Jones County Rank High
4. Public Meetings Scheduled for October Regarding Proposed Boating Regulations

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRIMITIVE WEAPONS DEER HUNTING SEASON OPENS OCTOBER 12

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 4, 2013) – Hunters looking to pursue deer with firearms that harken back to a different time will have their chance, Oct. 12-18, during the week-long primitive weapons deer hunting season. During last year’s primitive weapons season, more than 45,000 hunters took home more than 10,500 deer representing about three percent of Georgia’s total deer harvest.

“The primitive weapons deer season provides hunters an opportunity to hunt with traditional or inline black powder firearms, or to continue hunting with archery gear,” said John W. Bowers, chief of the Game Management Section. “It is a chance to ‘get in the woods’ with a different type of firearm prior to the opening of the more traditional modern firearms deer season.”

Being young is a bonus during primitive weapons season! Youth under 16 years of age may hunt deer with any legal deer firearm Oct. 12-18, including during any wildlife management area primitive weapons hunt.

More than one million acres of public hunting land is available to hunters in Georgia, including more than 100 state-operated wildlife management areas. Many of these areas offer special hunts throughout the season, including primitive weapons hunts. Dates and locations for these hunts are available in the 2013-2014 Georgia Hunting Seasons and Regulations guide. An online copy of the Regulations guidebook and WMA maps can be found at www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/regulations .

During primitive weapons season, hunters may use archery equipment, muzzleloading shotguns (20 gauge or larger) and muzzleloading firearms (.44 caliber or larger) to pursue whitetails.

Hunters are allowed a season bag limit of 10 antlerless deer and two antlered deer (one of the two antlered deer must have a minimum of four points, one inch or longer, on one side of the antlers). Special regulations apply to archery-only counties and extended archery season areas. Counties in the Metro Atlanta area (Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, and Rockdale counties) offer either-sex archery deer hunting Sept. 14-Jan. 31. Hunters may harvest deer of either-sex during the primitive weapons season.

All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during primitive weapons season. Scopes and other optical sighting devices are legal for muzzleloading firearms and archery equipment.

To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license, big game license and a current deer harvest record. If hunting on a WMA, a WMA license is required. Licenses can be purchased online at www.gohuntgeorgia.com/licenses-permits-passes , by phone at 1-800-366-2661 or at a license agent (list of agents available online).

For more information on deer hunting seasons and regulations, visit www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/regulations .

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

HUNTING SAFELY DURING DEER PRIMITIVE WEAPONS SEASON

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 4, 2013) – Using primitive weapons, such as muzzleloaders, require specific safety precautions, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division. Primitive weapons deer hunting season is Oct. 12-18, 2013.

“Muzzleloaders require that a hunter be familiar with the difference between these and modern firearms,” says Walter Lane, hunter development program manager with the Wildlife Resources Division. “We encourage all hunters to review muzzleloader-specific safety tips before heading to the woods.”

Following are recommendations to ensure a safe experience:

Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
Never rely solely on the gun’s “safety” mechanism.
Handle every gun as if it was loaded.
Do not use alcohol or drugs while handling a firearm.
Never smoke in the proximity of a muzzleloader.
Use an intermediate device, such as a measure, to pour powder into a barrel.
Keep flask and powder containers away from flames and sparks to prevent an accidental explosion.
Use only powders specific to each muzzleloader and recommended by that firearms manufacturer.
Place percussion cap on nipple only when ready to shoot.
The gun is safely unloaded only after removing the bullet, powder and percussion cap. If using a flintlock muzzleloader, remove the bullet and powder, and un-prime the flash pan.
Use the recommended loading materials, the correct powder charge, the right diameter and weight bullet and the correct lead material.
Never use plastic (poly) patches. These are different from sabots.
Treat a misfire as though the gun could fire at any moment.
Make sure the gun is unloaded before attempting to clean it.
Make sure the projectile is firmly seated on the powder before capping and firing.
Never blow down the barrel of a muzzleloader to clear or extinguish sparks.

All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during the primitive weapons season. Hunters may harvest deer of either-sex during the primitive weapons season.

To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license, big game license and a current deer harvest record. If hunting on a WMA, a WMA license is required. Licenses can be purchased online at www.gohuntgeorgia.com/licenses-permits-passes , by phone at 1-800-366-2661 or at a license agent (list of agents available online).

For more information on muzzleloader safety, visit www.gohuntgeorgia.com/hunting/education .

###

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

YOUTH HUNTER EDUCATION STATE CHALLENGE EVENT WINNERS-BULLOCH AND JONES COUNTY RANK HIGH

MANSFIELD, Ga. (Oct. 4, 2013) – Seven teams and individuals, made up of more than 30 youth, were able to showcase their outdoors knowledge and demonstrate their skills at the recent State Youth Hunter Education Challenge (YHEC) at the Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center.

Team and individual results are as follows:

1st Place Senior Team – Ducks Unlimited Team from Bulloch County
2nd Place Senior Team – GA Pride Team from Jones County
3rd Place Senior Team – GOB Team from Jones County
1st Place Junior Team – National Wild Turkey Federation Team from Bulloch County

The overall high scorers for the event were:

Senior Division – Jacob Deal (487), winning him a muzzleloader
Junior Division – Isaac Deal (412), winning him a lock-on tree stand

Teams and individuals competed in regional YHEC events throughout the year to qualify for the state competition. First place teams in the state YHEC are now eligible to compete in the 2014 NRA International YHEC scheduled for July 20-25 at Mill Cove Environmental Center in Mansfield, Pa.

This competition, which was open to all hunter education-certified youth, 18 years of age and younger, aims to test participants’ abilities in multiple outdoor skills, such as 3-D archery trail, orienteering, shoot/don’t shoot scenarios, shotgun, rifle and a hunter safety trail. The event was hosted by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division.

Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center is located near Mansfield, less than an hour southeast of Atlanta off Interstate 20. The address is 543 Elliott Trail, Mansfield 30055.

Dates and locations of YHEC events, plus practice tests and program information, are available at www.georgiawildlife.com/YHEC.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PUBLIC MEETING SCHEDULED FOR OCTOBER REGARDING PROPOSED BOATING REGULATIONS

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 4, 2013) – Local boaters and other interested parties are invited to attend one of three upcoming public meetings hosted by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Law Enforcement Division to discuss proposed regulation changes regarding boating.

The proposed changes reflect several items, including the need to allow for an exemption from age restrictions on vessel operation for sanctioned motor vessel races while operating a vessel within the area approved for the race as a participant in the race, list specific boater education rental certificate provisions, and indicate the procedure for providing proof of successful rental course completion and establish requirements for violators.

A copy of the proposed regulations and locations of the three public meetings is available at www.georgiawildlife.com/boating/regulations/proposed .

The Law Enforcement Division encourages attendance from local boaters to gather public opinion. Anyone attending the meeting is welcome to provide statements or comments, either orally or in writing. Statements should be concise to permit everyone an opportunity to speak. Participants must register upon arrival and notify the registering official of their intent to give a statement. Those unable to attend may submit written statements, postmarked by November 4, 2013.

Written statements should be mailed or emailed to:
Georgia Department of Natural Resources
Law Enforcement Division
Attn: Lt. Col. Jeff Weaver
2070 US Hwy. 278, SE
Social Circle, GA 30025

These meeting sites are accessible to people with physical disabilities. To request sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids, contact Lt. Col. Jeff Weaver at (770) 918-6408 no later than October 15, 2013.

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