News from the TWRA
The Tennessee Wildlife Re-sources Agency urges waterfowl hunters to report leg and neck band numbers they find on ducks and geese to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The recovery of waterfowl band numbers reveals scientifically valuable information necessary to monitor migration patterns and manage North America’s ducks and geese.
The USFWS has implemented a toll-free number for hunters to report band numbers. It is 1-800-327-BAND (2263). The information to report is the band number, the date of harvest and the county or area of harvest.
Waterfowl bands are prized trophies to waterfowl hunters and do not need to be sent to the Wildlife Service. In return for reporting band numbers, the cooperating hunter will receive a fact sheet and a certificate appropriate for framing.
Tennessee’s third segment of mourning dove hunting season opens at thirty minutes before sunrise on Saturday and continues until sunset on Jan. 1.
The daily bag limit for mourning doves is 15.
Although little used by hunters, this last segment can be very productive. Late harvested grain fields attract large flocks of northern doves as they migrate south. This can provide some excellent and challenging shooting to those who are willing to withstand the winter weather.
Hunters should remember that in addition to their licenses, the Migratory Bird Permit is required for hunting doves. Shotguns must be plugged to hold no more than three shells.
Many Tennesseans will be receiving firearms as gifts for this holiday season and the TWRA is urging everyone who receives a new firearm to handle them in a safe, responsible manner. Hunters know the importance of safety while in the field and firearms in the home need to be treated with the same respect.
Tips for home firearms safety include:
• Always read the owner’s manual before taking a new firearm out to the range or hunting. Not all firearms operate the same.
• Never handle or show guns without first carefully checking to be sure they are unloaded. Open the action and keep it open until the gun is ready for storage.
• Unload all firearms before taking them into the home. Even if you unloaded them after the range session or hunt ended, check them again before taking them inside.
• Rifles and shotguns should be stored securely in racks, cabinets or safes. Handguns should be stored in a similar manner. If the proper storage facilities are not available, action or trigger locks should be installed.
• All ammunition should be kept under lock and in a location separate from firearms.
• When handling firearms, always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction. Avoid horseplay at all times. Guns are not toys and they must always be treated with respect.
Remember, firearm accidents don’t just happen. They are caused by not knowing how a firearm works or by disregarding a basic safety rule. Safe gun handling must be practiced at all times.
Published in The Messenger 12.13.07