Sept. 23 is National Hunting and Fishing Day in California, where both seasons are in full swing. Deer, bear, grouse, early mountain quail, rabbit, and tree squirrel seasons are underway across the state, with high country streams, rivers and lakes are in their prime time, officials said.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are joining to celebrate California's long-standing outdoor heritage.
Together, CDFW and BLM officials said in a release they are proud to promote hunting and fishing opportunities available on public lands. BLM-managed public lands in California offer a wide variety of recreational opportunities including hunting, fishing, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, boating and backcountry exploring. CDFW is responsible for over 1 million acres of fish and wildlife habitat, managed through 749 properties throughout the state.
The public is advised to check area closures and local restrictions before heading out. Several large wildfires are also currently aflame, which may close some areas for either sport. Additionally, roads severely damaged by winter may account for other closures or restricted access. Information on area closures is available at wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/area-alerts.
While current target shooting restrictions are in place on some BLM-managed public lands, hunting in those areas is open with a valid hunting license. For updates on BLM restrictions visit: blm.gov/programs/public-safety-and-fire/fire-and-aviation/regional-info/california/fire-restrictions.
California is phasing-in the use of non-lead ammunition for hunting, officials said. Lead ammunition is permitted in 2017 for hunting deer in California outside of the California condor range, state wildlife areas or ecological reserves where non-lead ammunition is required. Learn more about California's phase-in of nonlead ammunition by visiting wildlife.ca.gov/Hunting/Nonlead-Ammunition.
Hunters and anglers are often referred to as the original conservationists. CDFW and BLM officials wanted to stress the value and contributions made by all of them.
For more information about California's hunting and fishing seasons, licenses and tags, visit www.wildlife.ca.gov.
For more information about BLM lands and outdoor activities, visit www.blm.gov/california.