News Releases: Campfire Restriction in Place on Multiple WMA’s; Fall Field Day for Quail Enthusiasts

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SUMMARY OF RELEASES

  1. CAMPFIRE RESTRICTION IN PLACE ON GEORGIA WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS
  2. FALL FIELD DAY SCHEDULED FOR NOV. 10 AT CHICKASAWHATCHEE WMA PROMOTES BRINGING BACK BOBWHITES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CAMPFIRE RESTRICTION IN PLACE ON GEORGIA WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREAS

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (Oct. 28, 2016) – Effective immediately, there is a campfire restriction on multiple Georgia Wildlife Management Areas (WMA), according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division (WRD).

“Due to the lingering and continued drought conditions, there is elevated risk of wildfire in north and central Georgia,” said John Bowers, Chief of WRD Game Management. “Suspending the use of campfires on WMAs minimizes the risk of dangerous wildfires that threaten public safety and our forest resources. This action is consistent with the policy recently established for National Forest Lands by the USDA Forest Service and is supported by the Georgia Forestry Commission.”

Until further notice, hunters and visitors to the WMAs named below must refrain from building, maintaining, attending or using a fire or campfire (note: commercially available fuel stoves are excluded from restriction):

Allatoona, Arrowhead, B.F. Grant, Berry College, Blanton Creek, Broad River, Buck Shoals, Clybel, Conasauga River, Coosawattee, Coosawattee – Carter’s Lake, Crockford-Pigeon Mountain, Dawson Forest, Elbert County, Fishing Creek, Hart County, J.L. Lester, Joe Kurz, Lower Broad River, Lula Bridge, McGraw Ford, Oconee, Otting, Paulding Forest, Pine Log, Rich Mountain (state-owned tracts), Sheffield, Soap Creek, West Point, Wilson Shoals and Zahnd.

WMAs located on Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest land are subject to the fire restriction policy established by the USDA U.S. Forest Service, which dictates that campfires are restricted to developed recreation areas only, and confined within receptacles designed for fire in developed campsites. More information can be found atwww.fs.usda.gov/alerts/conf/alerts-notices.

For more information on Georgia WMAs, visit www.georgiawildlife.com/Hunting/WMAnews.

For more information, contact Brad Alexander, Wildlife Biologist, [email protected] or 229-495-6529

 

FALL FIELD DAY SCHEDULED FOR NOV. 10 AT CHICKASAWHATCHEE WMA PROMOTES BRINGING BACK BOBWHITES

 ALBANY, Ga. (Oct. 28, 2016) – Join wildlife biologists for a free Fall Field Day to explore the ongoing quail habitat restoration efforts at Chickasawhatchee Wildlife Management Area (WMA) near Albany, Georgia.  This event, scheduled for Nov. 10 at 1 p.m. and sponsored by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division (WRD), also will give participants the opportunity to gather information about enhancing quail habitat on their own property.

Named the official State of Georgia Gamebird in 1970, the bobwhite quail provides a thrilling experience for hunters.  However, due to extensive changes in Georgia’s landscape over the last 80+ years the quail population has declined drastically, and consequently so have the number of quail hunters.

The good news is there is growing interest in quail restoration. Through the Bobwhite Quail Initiative (BQI), WRD biologists work with landowners to help restore habitat for quail, songbirds and other grass-forb-shrub dependent wildlife species on private lands.

Special Fall Field Day Event Scheduled: Limited Spots Available

Interested landowners and others are welcome to attend the upcoming Fall Field Day at Chickasawhatchee WMA, scheduled for Nov. 10 at 1 p.m. Topics will include: quail habitat restoration and management, prescribed fire, pine thinning, hardwood removal, and predator control.  Landowners also can find out what financial assistance opportunities are available to assist with habitat restoration efforts on their property.

Spaces for the Fall Field Day are limited, so call to register soon.  Contact Brad Alexander (229-495-6529 or [email protected]) to register.

More About BQI

The goal of the BQI program is to work with enough landowners and even facilitate formation of “landowner cooperatives” so that large blocks of habitat will be managed to provide suitable habitat for quail.  This will improve the quail population response to habitat management and ultimately improve quail hunting.

The benefits of quail habitat restoration can impact more than hunters.  Improving habitat for quail also means improved habitat for many species of wildlife that use this habitat type and it could help rural economies by attracting hunters and potentially provide an opportunity for quail hunting leases.

Learn more about managing your land for quail, BQI and how to support quail restoration efforts in Georgia at www.gohuntgeorgia.com/bobwhite-quail or contact State Quail Coordinator Paul Grimes (478-258-0380 or [email protected]).

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