UPDATES TO PROPOSAL FOR PUBLIC LAND DUCK HUNTING CHANGES
NASHVILLE — The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s proposal for public land duck hunting and blind drawing procedures has significantly changed in the last month in response to public comments. This proposal is a substantial effort to increase the number of duck hunters who get drawn to hunt TWRA public wildlife management areas (WMA)s each season.
The updated proposal now increases access for hunters statewide and retains significantly more traditional season-long, 60-day blind locations as offered currently. In addition to the 414 season long blinds, there will be 71 hunt locations designated for quota hunts for 3, 4, or 7-day periods at a marked location or an Agency-built blind. There are no changes proposed to privately-owned/permanent registered blinds.
TWRA will present its updated proposal for changes to public land duck hunting to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission for consideration at its recently postponed meeting now taking place March 4-5. The meeting will be held in Franklin at the Marriott of Cool Springs.
“We value what our hunters have to say and we have updated this proposal as a compromise that will meet the Agency’s objective of providing increased access to public land duck hunters, computerizing our drawings to increase fairness, and honoring the traditions of duck hunting in Tennessee. In addition to adding some quota hunt locations, we will be adding priority points to the quota hunt location draws so that people can increase their chances of being drawn each year they apply,” stated Jason Maxedon, deputy director, TWRA.
The TWRA has received public comments through the years about how the current public land duck hunting system operates. The comments mostly fall into two categories to include the need for increased duck hunting opportunities on public lands (i.e. more access) and concerns over the fairness of the hand-held duck blind draw system. A scientific survey of duck hunters done in partnership with the University of Tennessee validated these comments as well as other issues with in-person hand-held draws and the desire for opportunities to hunt for shorter time periods.
In 2019, the TWRA made changes to make the in-person drawings more equal for everyone. In 2020, due to COVID-19, all hand-held duck blind drawings were computerized and online, which made the process fair and equitable for hunters across Tennessee. This year’s efforts are a continuation of an effort to meet the Agency goals.
More information on the proposals can be found at https://www.tn.gov/twra/proposed-duck-hunting-changes.html. Public comments may be emailed to [email protected]
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Way to screw things up yet again TWRA we all really appreciate you ruining a system that worked just fine! And why dont you lower the price of Sportsman's lic. for next year since you gave away one of our great perks with the free entries for the draw and absolutely flooded the system!
I like the computer drawings for duck blinds! A lot of us work and can't always make it to hand drawings. Its about time to open up the possibility of getting drawn to more people! Thank you TWRA
For tier 1, we build and maintain throughout the season, but what happens to the blind at end of season that we built? Does is stay or can we remove?
Not concerned about utilization just about getting different names drawn. What a terrible measure of success.
Why not educate and better publicize what opportunities already exist and how to take advantage of those before wasting time with a change no one wants and only the most fragile asked for.
Anytime someone says "trust us" and "we're with the government, we're here to help", you better start watching your wallet.
Awww btw we took every good blind out, and gave you the crap. I'm waiting to see the fires from my house of the blind burning because nobody is going to keep up these blinds that are multiple day draws. Blinds have to be rebuilt, fix, patched, etc every year, and BRUSHED. No crops, no blinds = end goal. So much for ever taking my son to the waterfowl drawing that I have been attending since i was 14 (24 years). So much for the town of big sandy generating money for little league and volunteer fire department. The virus was the easiest way out of this entire thing. I knew when it went to a draw it was over. In 10 years everything will be a daily draw with no blind site. Keep mowing down corn on elk horn refuge (cross creek) and shut down everything from Camden to the MS River. Keep increasing license prices, then complain about the death of the younger generation of hunting.
Well after reviewing over the weekend this presentation on the new draft proposal 2, it is nothing more than the original poorly designed original proposal except they change the timeline for the change by stating the agency will/can review every two years. This means in two years the agency will/can designate more tier 2/3 blinds at the expense of tier 1 blinds. As commented else, just pathetic! When will the agency realize, we the hunters are the major stakeholders and we want to know what the agency is doing for waterfowl habitat improvements with our license fees to get the ducks to come and imprint here. Again, nothing! I suggest everyone call or email their state reps and senators again to get the agency to understand is not the resolution we want.
Well thank you for listing to us the waterfowl hunters! Obviously, the pressure the agency received on the first proposal was well deserved and noted. A point I see that not seems fair is the agency's draft 2 proposal while more like our current system in terms of tier 1 is now creating unfair exclusion to tier 1 drawn hunters by preventing them to apply to tier 2/3 blinds draws. Why? That is not opening access opportunity to all. Each tier draw should be open to all even if drawn in another because we, the hunters, all paid for our license equally. If your intent is to be open to all licensees for access opportunity then be open in all drawings, this rule seems vindictive.
On cost, I am surprise the agency has found money to build tier 2 blinds through a fund not using licensing dollars. Why has not the agency use this fund to manage and improve the WMAs habitat for waterfowling hunting – the real issue. On the worst waterfowl season ever, what investment has the agency done to bring in waterfowl and imprint here. The reason TN duck hunters are saying they are leaving to hunt other states is because those states are actively managing their public areas for waterfowl to come and imprint to those areas. management. differentagency
fore coming soon on how the agency will make Tennessee one of the top spots to waterfowling again. As you stated, the agency can do a lot with little and the commission is focus on waterfowl, so let's get going and direct your efforts and your team on the real issue as improving so call access does nothing in helping Tennessee waterfowl hunters see, decoy, call and shoot waterfowl.
I look forward to what you have planned!
They also need to add: “When hunting any public area or waterway, hunters must be at least 400 yards from all permanent blinds and dwellings on private property.” It should be 400 yards everywhere. Spread the people out! These public areas are just too crowded to have a “quality hunt”. It is now becoming a major safety issue. Learn from the situation that happened on Reelfoot just weeks ago! Skybusters and swing shooters are ruining it for everyone. Private areas included. Spread the people out!!