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Wildlife & Hunting

Waterfowl Hunting Information

Where to Hunt
Mississippi offers numerous waterfowl hunting opportunities. From state, federal, and privately owned lands managed intensively for waterfowl to the various public waterways throughout the state, there is surely a waterfowl hunting opportunity located within a reasonable drive of most Mississippians. Each of these areas are subject to their own rules and regulations. The links below should help you learn the rules and regulations for public waterfowl hunting on an area near you.

Waterfowl Draw Hunt Information
The MDWFP has numerous waterfowl hunting opportunities on its Wildlife Management Areas. Hunters can freelance waterfowl hunt on many areas like Sunflower, Malmaison, O'Keefe, Sky Lake, Pascagoula, Nanih Waiya, or Canal Section WMAs. Or if you are after a more structured experience with defined hunting units and on-site personnel available for questions, perhaps one of our areas offering a limited access hunting opportunity is of more interest to you. Wildlife Management Areas like Howard Miller, Charlie Capps, Mahannah, Trim Cane, Tuscumbia (Unit 2), Muscadine, and William (Billy) C. Deviney all have limited access waterfowl hunts. If you are interested in applying for reservations for a waterfowl draw hunt, Apply during any of the draw application periods held during fall and winter for regular season duck hunts or early August for early teal season hunts.

WMA Waterfowl Draw Hunt Procedures for the 2021-22 Hunting Season

The MDWFP has made procedural changes to waterfowl draw hunts on Wildlife Management Areas for the 2021-22 hunting season.

Procedures for the upcoming hunting season are outlined below:

  • The waterfowl draw hunt application period (5 draw periods per WMA) will be open concurrently from Oct 1 to Oct 15 and all drawings and notifications will be completed by Nov 1.
  • Hunting units will be assigned when draw winners are notified by email.
  • Drawn hunters and their guests will sign in on the pre-drawn sign in sheet by 5:00 am (at WMA Headquarters Building), and then proceed to their assigned hunting unit the morning of the hunt.
  • There will be “stand-by” opportunity on Howard Miller, Mahannah, Mahannah Timber, and Muscadine Farms WMAs for non-drawn hunters to show up the day of a hunt for a chance to fill a vacant spot.
  • If drawn hunters DO NOT sign in by 5:00 am, their hunt unit will become available in the stand-by draw.
  • For stand-by hunters, one designated person from each hunt group will sign in all members of their hunting party on a numbered stand-by sign in sheet by 5:00 am. and will draw for the order in which they will select any hunt units left available.
  • This will continue until all available hunt units are allocated or all stand-by groups have a hunt unit. 
  • For more information on individual WMA rules and regulations, please visit http://www.mdwfp.com/wildlife-hunting/wma/

Draw Procedures for Individual WMAs:

Waterfowl Hunt Unit Maps
The MDWFP offers a variety of mapping tools to help hunters get a feel of an area before they get a chance to visit it. Our Geographic Information System Program offers an interactive mapping application with updated aerial photography, topographical maps, and GPS locations. They also have maps of waterfowl hunting units for our Wildlife Management Areas that delineate hunting areas. Our Wildlife Management Area Program has maps and area regulations for all WMAs.

2021-22 Habitat Status on Selected Waterfowl Hunting Areas

Waterfowl habitat status on selected WMAs is updated annually prior to the regular duck season.

  • Howard Miller WMA - Howard Miller WMA was planted this year with a combination of corn and soybeans. There was substantial flooding that took place during the month of June that flooded out approximately 600 acres of crops. Fortunately, this resulted in a decent moist soil response. These areas were left as moist soil units and strips of Sorghum Sudan grass was planted. Strips of corn were left in both the corn and soybean fields. There is significant increase in hunter cover this year between the Sudan grass, Corn strips, and Coffee weed. In addition, Howard Miller WMA will have duck blinds located on select units as an option for hunters to use. 
  • Mahannah WMA – The WMA staff at Mahannah WMA took advantage of some of the dryer weather conditions this year to draw down most of the units and do some form of habitat manipulation. The entire area remains managed as moist soil however, some of the species composition within each unit is a little different than previous years.. The majority of the units will have primarily sprangletop, millet and smartweeds, with some units still containing duck potato. Overall, the area's waterfowl food abundance is very good. This year, waterfowl hunters will see a tremendous increase in the amount of cover present in the units. In addition, Mahannah WMA will have duck blinds located on select units as an option for hunters to use.
  • Muscadine Farms WMA – The WMA staff at Muscadine Farms WMA have worked tirelessly this summer managing for moist soil plants. A combination of disking, mowing, and herbicide applications have allowed for textbook moist-soil plant response. Some areas were managed as emergent marsh habitat and allowed for excellent early Teal hunting opportunities. Many impoundments have strips of Sorghum Sudan for additional hunter cover inside the units. Overall, waterfowl foraging and resting habitat on Muscadine will be excellent.
  • Twin Oaks WMA – WMA staff were able to do a good bit of work on the duck impoundments at Twin Oaks WMA this year.  All of the units were disked under to set back to succession stage and dirt work was done to level out some of the low-lying areas. Timely rains following the late summer manipulation provided for an excellent response from moist soil plants such as sprangletop, smartweed, barnyard grass, and fall panic grass.  
  • Malmaison WMA - The Malmaison green tree reservoir (GTR) had a fair moist soil-growing season, and staff have mowed some holes in the natural vegetation for waterfowl and hunter access. The oak trees within the GTR are showing signs of a decent acorn crop. Waterfowl foraging and resting habitat should be fair in the GTR. The McIntyre Scatters produced an abundance of water lily. Fall water levels are low and winter rainfall will still be needed to flood this area.
  • O'Keefe WMA - The waterfowl impoundments on O'Keefe WMA contain a wide variety of waterfowl foods. The contract farmer grew soybeans with alternating strips of corn. The strips of corn were left standing for waterfowl food and hunter cover. Moist-soil production was excellent across all impoundments and some areas were supplemented with Japanese millet and milo. Some manipulations were completed to clear dense areas of undesirable vegetation before flooding. 
  • Charlie Capps WMA- Managers at Capps WMA used a late drawdown on the moist soil impoundments this year and were able to get a good response of millet and sprangletop.  Capps WMA is dotted with stands of Willow Trees and has a substantial amount of cover. 
  • Trim Cane WMA - The WMA impoundments are primarily managed for moist soil vegetation. Approximately 50% of each impoundment received some sort of habitat manipulation. Several disturbance techniques including disking, burning, clipping, and spraying were used to create a diverse habitat complex. Approximately 5-10% of impoundment acreage was planted in milo and millet. Significant amounts of rainfall will still be needed for adequate waterfowl habitat. Updated water level and hunting information may be obtained by calling (662) 272-8303.
  • Tuscumbia WMA - Above average rainfall has had the impoundments wetter than normal this summer, with some impoundments never drying out, which promoted excellent moist-soil habitat. In addition, portions of several impoundments were planted in millet. Managers have continued to create additional openings within impoundments. Updated water level and hunting information may be obtained by calling (662) 284-0740.
  • William (Billy) C. Deviney WMA – The majority of the WMA was planted in rice this year. Approximately 300 acres of soybeans with strips of corn were also planted. Post-harvest, the rice was rolled, burned and flooded. The abundance of Waterfowl foraging habitat is Excellent on the entire area. The sides of the levees around each impoundment were left to grow up in grasses for cover; still, there is very limited cover within each unit, therefore, hunters may wish to bring their own cover.
  • Pearl River WMA - There is an abundance of native vegetation with portions of the impoundments planted in Brown-top millet. There are flooded timber areas and flooded areas with dense brush adjacent to the impoundments to provide for suitable cover.

 

Waterfowl Draw Hunt Chances
The chance of getting a pre-season reservation waterfowl hunt varies from one WMA to the next. Harvest success, word-of-mouth, location, and waterfowl use all play an important role in dictating how many people apply for a certain WMA. Also, how many dates hunters choose and how they prioritize those dates can influence their chances of being drawn. For example, prioritizing for all available hunt dates within a draw period increases your likelihood of being drawn.

 

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