Oklahoma Hunting News

December Brings Pheasant Season to Oklahoma

December brings holiday cheer, cold weather and the start of two full months of hunting the colorful ring-necked pheasant in northern Oklahoma.

According to biologists with the Wildlife Department, two main factors determine how many pheasants will be available for hunters to pursue each season. The first is the number of adult birds that survive the winter and enter the breeding season.

Deer Hunting Plays Important Economic Role in Oklahoma

According to Joanna Matthews of the Antlers Chamber of Commerce, deer hunting season has an important impact on the local southeast Oklahoma community.

“It is like Christmas,” she said. “The Friday before opening day of rifle season, the highways and stores are all packed with people coming in to hunt.”

Oklahoma's Current Rut Activity at a Glance

Deer rifle season kicks off Saturday, Nov. 19, and promises as usual to be the biggest day of the year for hunting in Oklahoma.

With 63 percent of last year’s total deer harvest coming from Oklahoma’s rifle hunting seasons, it accounts for the greatest portion of deer taken by hunters. Surveys indicate that last year, more than 156,000 hunters took part in the 16-day regular deer gun season alone, and when taking into account the youth deer gun and holiday antlerless deer seasons, that number jumps to nearly 204,000.

No Hunter Ed is No Problem for Most Oklahomans Who Still Want to Hunt this Weekend

Four changes to the state’s hunter education requirements took effect in August, resulting in more opportunities for Oklahomans to try hunting while making hunting safer for the state’s youngest big game hunters.

Oklahoma Online Hunter Check Station Brings New-found Convenience to Checking in Big Game

Many hunters have already experienced the convenience of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s Check Station Web Portal, which allows sportsmen to check in their harvested deer, turkey and elk electronically. It is simple and fast, requiring only a computer or mobile device with Internet access.

Hunters can print a carcass tag from a printer or simply write their confirmation number on the field tag that they made when they harvested the animal.

Oklahoma Quail Season Opens Nov. 12

Oklahoma’s quail season opens Nov. 12 and runs through Feb. 15, providing hunters with an opportunity to hunt one of the most popular game birds in Oklahoma.

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation has conducted annual roadside surveys in August and October since 1990 to index quail populations across Oklahoma. Department employees run 83 different 20-mile routes in all counties except Oklahoma and Tulsa, and large counties like Beaver, Ellis, LeFlore, McCurtain, Osage, Pittsburg and Roger Mills have two routes.

Mountain Lion Killed by Vehicle Near Minco, Oklahoma Provides Research Opportunity for Wildlife Department

A mountain lion was found dead Nov. 1 along HWY 81 north of Minco after having been hit by a vehicle, according to Erik Bartholomew, furbearer biologist for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.

Youth Bonus Deer Hunts - Applications Due August 19th

Beginning deer hunters have a unique opportunity to participate in three bonus antlerless deer hunts that will take place on private land in Osage County (Oct 7-9, 2011), Ellis County (Dec 9-10, 2011) and Alfalfa County (Jan 13-15, 2012).

This year 42 youth will be drawn to receive one of the bonus private lands antlerless deer gun permits.  To be eligible, youth must have completed their hunter education requirements prior to applying and must be 12-17 years old at the time of their scheduled hunt.

Oklahoma Will Open New WMA This Fall

This fall Oklahomans will have about 8,000 new acres of public land to hunt thanks to the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s acquisition of the new Cross Timbers Wildlife Management Area in Love County.

At its July meeting, the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission approved emergency rules for the new property, which includes 6,100 acres that have been purchased by the Department and an additional 2,000 acres under lease agreement.

Oklahoma Researchers Track Black Bears in Northeast

While black bears in southeast Oklahoma have been studied extensively by biologists and are even pursued by hunters each fall, less is known about bears inhabiting the northeast portion of the state. But a research project by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation in partnership with the Oklahoma Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit and the Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management at Oklahoma State University is helping to change that.