Ohio Upland Game Hunting Season Begins November 6

Ohio Upland Game Hunting Season Begins November 6

Ohio Department Natural Resources
Ohio Department Natural Resources
COLUMBUS, OH –-(AmmoLand.com)- The season for three of Ohio’s most popular game species, ring-necked pheasant, cottontail rabbit and bobwhite quail, begins Friday, November 6, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

“The state’s ring-necked pheasant population has been stable for the last several years, and this year should show some good opportunities for sportsmen,” said Nathan Stricker, project leader with the division’s Olentangy Wildlife Research Station.

Although 2009 started with a cool, wet spring, mild summer temperatures and moderate precipitation provided for good conditions during the nesting season, noted Stricker.

Conditions have been good in areas of the state where habitat is plentiful. Private lands enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program have been very important to supporting upland game populations. Williams and Defiance counties in northwest Ohio have strong pheasant populations because of the habitat contributions by local landowners. Upland game populations are responding positively to habitat programs in other areas around the state, especially in counties with significant enrollment in Scioto CREP and CP33 Quail Buffer practices.

Cottontail rabbit hunting continues through February 28, 2010. Ring-necked pheasant hunting is open through January 10, 2010. Both seasons are closed during the statewide 2009 deer-gun hunting season, November 30 through December 6, as well as the extra weekend of deer-gun hunting December 19-20.

Rabbits, pheasants and quail may be hunted from sunrise to sunset. The daily bag limit for all three species remains unchanged from last year at four rabbits, two pheasants (roosters/males only) and four quail.

Hunters are reminded that snowshoe hares are not legal game in Ohio and may not be taken. Recently reintroduced to northeastern Ohio after nearly a century of absence, snowshoe hares are brown early in the season, resembling cottontail rabbits. To avoid confusion between cottontail rabbits and snowshoe hares, portions of Geauga and Ashtabula counties will be closed to all rabbit hunting from November 6 through December 6. The coats of most hares will have turned white by early December, allowing for proper distinction.

There are two restricted zones that cover portions of Geauga and Ashtabula counties. The first restricted area encompasses parts of Geauga and Ashtabula counties and is bordered by U.S. Route 6 to the north, U.S. Route 322 to the south, Kile Road to the west, and State Route 534 to the east. The second restricted area is in Ashtabula County bounded on the north by Cork-Cold Springs Road, on the west by Windsor-Mechanicsville Road, on the south by New Hudson Road and on the east by U.S. Route 45. A map of these two areas can be viewed in the 2009-2010 Ohio Hunting and Trapping Regulations and on the Internet at wildohio.com.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife releases pheasants on selected public hunting areas throughout the state prior to opening day of the pheasant season, the second Saturday of the season and Thanksgiving Day. Hunters may call 1-800-WILDLIFE for locations of specific release sites.

Bobwhite quail hunting is limited to 16 counties in southern Ohio: Adams, Athens, Brown, Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Highland, Jackson, Meigs, Montgomery, Pike, Preble, Ross, Scioto, Vinton and Warren. The season continues through November 29.

Additional hunting information is contained in the 2009-2010 Ohio Hunting Regulations brochure, which is available where hunting licenses are sold, on the Internet at wildohio.com or by calling 1-800-WILDLIFE.

The 2009-2010 licenses will not be printed on waterproof paper. Sportsmen and women should protect their licenses and permits from the elements by carrying them in a protective pouch or wallet.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR web site at www.ohiodnr.com.