After receiving public input about regulations proposed to the Ohio Wildlife Council on Feb. 10, modifications were made to some of the proposed season dates for the 2016-2017 hunting regulations. These changes were presented to the Ohio Wildlife Council at Wednesday’s meeting. The council will vote on these amended proposals and all other fish and wildlife proposals at their next meeting, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
The newly proposed two-day gun season dates are Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 17-18, rather than the originally proposed Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 28-29. The newly proposed dates for muzzleloader season are Jan. 7-10, 2017, one week earlier than originally proposed. Public input collected over the last two months from a variety of constituents indicated that more people preferred the two-day season the weekend before Christmas and the muzzleloader season during the first weekend in January.
An adjustment to the dove season was also proposed. The opening day for the second split has been proposed to be Saturday, Dec. 17, two days later than the original proposal of Dec. 15, in order to comply with federal regulations for season lengths.
All other proposals remain unchanged from their original presentation at the Ohio Wildlife Council meeting on Feb. 10. The Ohio Wildlife Council will vote on proposals at its next regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday, April 13.
• Families On The Water is a pilot program from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources — a partnership among the Division of Wildlife, the Division of Watercraft and the Division of Parks and Recreation — to get the whole family outdoors to learn about and enjoy boating and fishing, together.
The 2016 program includes: Two workshops at Cabela’s (Polaris) Tuesday, June 7, and Thursday, June 9, from 6-8 p.m. each night; An all-day fishing and boating outing at Delaware State Park on Saturday, June 11, and; An overnight campout at Delaware State Park on Friday, June 17, followed by a day of activities Saturday, June 18.
Families must commit to attending all events associated with the program including a family interview and successfully completing an Ohio Boating Education Course (Home Study version) provided by ODNR.
Participants will receive instruction on boat handling, pole rigging, fish species, fishing technique, tent set-up, campfire cooking and campground safety as well as advice on how to shop, what to buy, what resources are available and how to use them. All materials, gear, boats, and equipment will be provided except that by June 7, participants 16 or older must have a valid Ohio fishing license. (May be purchased first night at Cabela’s.)
• Two workshop opportunities are available in northeast Ohio this spring for individuals who are interested in becoming certified Passport to Fishing instructors according to the ODNR. Both workshops are scheduled from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Wildlife District Three Headquarters, 912 Portage Lakes Drive, Akron. The dates are Sunday, April 17th, 2016 and Saturday, April 23rd, 2016. Participants are only required to attend one class.
Workshops are free but pre-registration is required as seating is limited; call Ken Fry, Division of Wildlife at (330) 245-3030. Participants must be at least 18 years old and will be required to participate in a background check.
By becoming certified instructors, attendees will help connect youths with the outdoors. Resources available to instructors include grants, equipment, brochures, and training.
Passport to Fishing was developed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and adopted by the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation. Workshops teach volunteers the basics of fishing and how to run a four-station fishing program with a fishing event. These instructors then go back to their communities, with a written curriculum and training aids, to teach youngsters and beginning anglers the basics of fishing. Read more about Ohio’s Passport to Fishing Program at wildohio.gov.
Until next time, Good Hunting and Good Fishing!
Ken Parrott is an Agricultural Science teacher with Northmor High School.