Dr. Sam Polles, Ph. D.
(2020, September-October issue of Mississippi Outdoors)
For those of us who enjoy living an outdoor lifestyle, this is an especially exciting time of year. As the dog days of summer slowly come to an end, the anticipation of the beginning of another hunting season is all-consuming. Preparations are underway for the opening of dove season which is always an exciting time – especially for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages.
If the heritage of hunting is to be preserved for the enjoyment of future generations, recruitment and retention of young sportsmen and women is essential. The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) is committed to providing quality opportunities for youth to experience the great outdoors. Youth Hunting Season(s) and other events geared specifically toward children under the age of sixteen, are important not only to the department, but also to the future of hunting in our great State.
Dove hunting was the introduction to hunting for many Mississippi hunters. Indeed, for many it is a family and community event. Since we began fighting the global COVID 19 pandemic back in March, many of you may not have been able to plant or manage your dove fields. If that is the case, please be aware that the MDWFP has several professionally prepared dove fields available to be hunted on some of its Wildlife Management Areas (WMA). In addition, the MDWFP offers special Youth Dove Hunts, by draw, on Black Prairie, Hell Creek, Leroy Percy, and Muscadine Farms WMAs. Please go to: https://www.mdwfp.com/wildlife-hunting/dove-program/ for more information on Youth Draw Hunts. Information on other WMAs with prepared dove fields may be found at: https://www.mdwfp.com/wildlife-hunting/wma/dove-fields/. The MDWFP is proud to be able to offer you these opportunities to take your child hunting in a safe and quality-managed hunting environment.
And since we are talking about safety, remember that hunting is the original “social distancing.”
Have a safe, happy, and healthy 2020-2021 Hunting Season.
Sam Polles, Ph. D.
MDWFP Executive Director