TWRC to discuss fall and spring hunting seasons

TWRC to discuss fall and spring hunting seasons
The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency’s recommendations for the 2008-09 fall and spring hunting seasons will be among the topics of discussion when the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission meets next week.
The regular session will begin at 1 p.m. Wednesday and will continue at 9 a.m. Thursday at the Region II Ray Bell Office Building in Nashville.
Proposals for manner and means, big game, small game, furbearers, early waterfowl, spring turkey, and wildlife management areas will be presented by TWRA staff.

WMAs affected
Heavy and continuous rains in the Mississippi, Ohio and Tennessee River systems have resulted in extreme flooding that is affecting crop production on several West Tennessee Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs).
“Heavy rains have caused TVA to slow or stop releasing water from Kentucky and Barkley lakes,” said TWRA waterfowl biologist Dan Fuqua.
“These rains have also flooded our WMAs along the lakes which mean all of the areas where TWRA normally plants waterfowl food are flooded and will remain flooded until Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley stabilize at normal summer pool. After this, TVA will begin pumping water out of the WMAs.”
The pumping process takes about four weeks to get water off waterfowl food areas of WMAs. It takes an additional two weeks of drying time before planting food plots. Additional rain will prolong the drying time.
“TWRA will strive to provide food for waterfowl, but if the water remains past June 15, the probability of having decent food plots for this winter will not be good,” Fuqua said.

Safe boating
Traditionally, the Memorial Day weekend marks the official start of boating season in Tennessee.
For many, it will be the first time to have a boat in the water. TWRA urges all Tennessee boaters to take a few extra minutes to review the basics of safety.
They are:
• Have a wearable life jacket for each person on board;
• If the boat is 16 feet or longer, there must be a type IV throwable device on board;
• Have a fire extinguisher on board if you have enclosed fuel compartments or cabins;
• Children younger than age 13 must wear a life jacket at all times while the boat is under way;
• Any boat operator born after Jan. 1, 1989, must have a TWRA-issued wallet Boating Safety Education Certificate if operating alone;
• Keep alcohol to a minimum. Choose a designated boat operator; and
• Make sure the boat registration is current and on board.
For more information about safe boating in Tennessee, log on to www.tnwildlife.org.
Published in The Messenger 5.16.08

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