Georgia Deer Season Opens October 20th
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 www.gohuntgeorgia.com 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 www.gohuntgeorgia.com, 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 www.gohuntgeorgia.com, contact a WRD Game Management Office or call (770) 918-6416.