More details are now available on waterfowl hunting seasons in Ohio including a "significant change" in waterfowl hunting zones as contained in a proposal going before the Ohio Wildlife Council this week.
If approved, the Ohio Division of Wildlife-sponsored proposal would move the dividing line between the north and south waterfowl hunting zones within Ohio. The DOW is basing the recommendation on information gathered from last year's 2000 Waterfowl Hunter Survey.
On Wednesday, the proposal to be submitted to the council would, in addition to the zone boundary change, set waterfowling seasons as follows: Oct. 20 in Ohio's North Zone and Oct. 27 in the South Zone. Also in the proposal is a young hunters waterfowl season statewide Oct. 13 and 14.
Survey: Hunter survey results showed most were in favor of moving the boundary zone north to U.S. Route 30 from the current Interstate 70 site. If approved, the proposal would do just that.
"We want to provide as much opportunity for successful hunts to as many people as possible," said state waterfowl biologist Steve Barry in a recent Ohio Division of Wildlife e-mail. "We do this by balancing biological data with the desires of the hunting public, all within guidelines required by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service."
Dates: Other season dates and information released in the division e-mail is as follows:
UOpening of duck hunting (except canvasbacks) in the North Zone would be Oct. 20 through Nov. 25, with a second split season Dec.1 through 23.
UThe North Zone season for canvasbacks would be Nov. 6 through 25, only.
UIn the South Zone, duck season (except canvasbacks) would run Oct. 27 through Nov. 11, with a second split season opening Dec. 8 through Jan. 20, 2002.
UThe South Zone season for canvasbacks would be Dec. 8 through 27, only.
UIn the Lake Erie Canada Goose Zone, the proposed goose season is Oct. 20 through 28, with a second split season opening Dec.8 through Jan. 2.
UThe Lake Erie Canada Goose Zone applies only to Canada geese and brant. Hunters may harvest light geese (snows, blues, Ross' and white fronts) within the Lake Erie Canada Goose Zone during the dates of the open goose season for the remainder of the North Zone. The goose season for the remainder of the North Zone would be Oct. 20 through Nov. 25, with a second split season Dec. 1 through Jan. 2.
UThe Special Late Canada Goose Season would open Jan.12 through 30. Areas open to the Special Late Canada Goose Season will include all of Fulton, Henry, Seneca and Huron counties; those portions of Wood and Lucas counties west and south of I-80 at the Wood/Ottawa county line, along I-80 west to I-280, north to I-75 north to the Ohio/Michigan border; those portions of Sandusky, Erie, and Summit counties south of I-80; those portions of Allen and Stark counties north of U.S. Route 30; and those portions of Ashtabula, Lake, and Geauga counties north of U.S. 6. Hunters must obtain a free permit in order to hunt in the special season.
What happens now is that the council will take a look at the proposals and make a final approval, expected Sept. 21.