Manager: Justin Hughes
Canal Section is located in Prentiss, Itawamba and Monroe Counties near Fulton. From the intersection of Hwy 78 and Hwy 25 in Fulton, go west on Hwy 78 4.0 miles and exit at the Peppertown Exit on to Hwy 178. On Hwy 178, go east 0.8 miles to the Canal Section WMA headquarters on the left. If you have any questions regarding Canal Section call (662) 862-2723.
The Canal Section Wildlife Management Area (CSWMA) is in northeast
Mississippi along the west side of the Tennessee-Tombigbee
Waterway. Starting at Highway 4 below the Bay Springs Lake lock and
dam in Tishomingo County, it continues southward through Prentiss,
Itawamba and Monroe counties and ends approximately five miles
south of Aberdeen.
The 32,000 acres of CSWMA are primarily hardwood and swamp
bottomland with shallow meandering streams and open lands which
were previously farmed. North of Amory, habitat is mostly
bottomland hardwood. The open areas south of Amory were reforested
in hardwood tree species in the early 1990's. These different
natural habitats, along with man-made waterfowl impoundments and
numerous summer and winter food plots account for why deer, turkey,
squirrel, rabbit and waterfowl are the most hunted species of
animals on the area.
Due to the loss of bottomland hardwood in the region, squirrel
hunting on CSWMA is very popular and successful. Deer hunting
on the area is good, with seasons and bag limits the same as
statewide. There are some restrictions on weapon usage in certain
areas. For deer hunting, see specific regulation descriptions for
these areas. When migrating ducks are passing through, waterfowl
hunting can be as good as it gets. If you scout the area well, you
can find isolated sloughs and pockets of water that can offer good
shooting. Waterfowl may be hunted on the entire area in accordance
with federal regulations, except for the man-made impoundments
which can only be hunted on Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays until
noon. Turkey hunting has been a favorite attraction of the area for
lots of sportsmen because of the bottomland habitat and numerous
gobbling birds. Just don't let those slough runs cut you off from
that lonesome gobbler.
Vehicular access points to the area (especially north of Amory)
are very limited, but access by boat on the old Tombigbee River and
the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway (TTW) is good. Walking or
cycling along the TTW levee is your best access option if you do
not have a boat.
Wildlife management objectives on the area include habitat
manipulation through scattered isolated selective timber harvests
to create openings that will be allowed to reforest in native
vegetation. These cuts will provide browse and cover for many
species of wildlife. Controlled burning and bushhogging along the
waterway levee provide early succession plant growth for rabbits
Springtime opportunities are bird watching, turkey hunting and
fishing. The bottomland hardwood habitat is host to many different
species of neotropical migrant songbirds. There is an osprey
nesting platform at each of the locks along the Canal Section,
several of which are used annually.
Bald eagles are not uncommon. Various shorebird and wading birds
are found along the waterway, old Tombigbee River, sloughs, marshes
and waterfowl impoundments. Catfish fishing is good in the old
river and crappie fishing is good in the waterway in the
Turkey hunting can be very good if you don't wait until late in
the season when you are apt to spend most of your hunt watching for
cottonmouths and slapping mosquitoes and deer flies.