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 Georgia DNR Announces WMA Changes

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Georgia DNR Announces WMA Changes - Tuesday, May 12, 2009 5:27 PM ( #1 )
Georgia DNR Announces Changes To State WMA Program

Georgia Department of Natural Resources

SOCIAL CIRCLE, GA - The Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division today announced that beginning July 1, there will be three less wildlife management areas (WMA) in the state’s program and one WMA will be reduced in size.

These changes were necessary due to decreased appropriations in the FY2010 state budget. Also, the Board of Natural Resources recently approved an addition of more than 1,700 acres to the state-owned Silver Lake Wildlife Management Area in Seminole County and another 7,000 acres in Long and McIntosh counties, known as Townsend WMA.

The four areas affected by the 2010 budget are the Lake Burton, Lower Blue Ridge, King Tract and Rayonier WMAs. Lake Burton and Lower Blue Ridge are part of the Chattahoochee National Forest and although the Division no longer will be conducting wildlife management on these areas, they will still remain open for public hunting. The King Tract and Rayonier are annual leases in southeast Georgia and will most likely be leased from the landowners by hunting clubs.

With the state’s recent land acquisition, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources brings the total amount of hunt-able land added to state properties since 2001 to more than 69,500 acres.

“The good news is that we have a net gain in total acres available to hunters over the last several years,” said Commissioner of Natural Resources Chris Clark. “The Department is fortunate in being able to offer more than one million acres of land to Georgia hunters for the purchase of a $19 WMA license. There is no better value, especially in these difficult economic times, for access to land for hunting.”

Areas were reviewed using several criteria, including whether they would remain available to hunters as public land or leases, proximity to other public hunting land and recent acquisitions potential for effective wildlife management and annual hunter participation. Recognizing that these areas provide some unique hunting opportunities, the Department is minimizing these impacts by identifying similar opportunities on other WMAs.

For example, opportunities for hunting deer with dogs being lost on the Rayonier WMA are scheduled for nearby Paulk’s Pasture and Dixon Memorial WMAs and a special regulation change is being proposed to add dog hunting for deer on Little Satilla WMA.

“The Division appreciates the continued support of the hunting public and is confident that by strategically selecting the areas to be reduced, we will minimize the ultimate effect on sportsmen,” says Wildlife Resources Division Director Dan Forster.

For more information on public hunting land in Georgia, visit www.gohuntgeorgia.com
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RE: Georgia DNR Announces WMA Changes - Tuesday, May 12, 2009 7:39 PM ( #2 )
Not to compare GA to Nodak or imply criticism of anybuddy's G&F outfits ... but Nodak's outfit is the only one in the nation that has it's own separate checkbook ... aside from D-J and P-R type revenues, they basically do not receive any state tax funds for their biennial budget ...

No, they don't survive on merely license fees, but the arrangement makes it relatively a bit easier for them to spend their own money, and to not be forced to rely upon largesse from the Lege, when times are tough ... we had a billion-dollar surplus @ the end of the last fiscal term, but they din't hope to get any of that, becuz they've never had to rely on it -- altho taxpayers got another break on both property and income levies this time around -- conversely, when the money is short they still have their reserves and can carry on perty much as usual ... including keeping the WMAs open and available ... tho the apparent demise of CRP will have a very negative effect, they're already planning on how to maintain the habitat ...

Our gang is also the second-smallest in numbers, of enforcement people (wardens) in the nation ... but I honestly think they do a very decent job of trying to do the best for the outdoorspersons, and all the public ...
All of life is six-to-five against, just enough to keep you interested. (Damon Runyan)

Gravity makes all the important decisions ... (John R. Powers)


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