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spectr17
11-14-2007, 10:09 PM
Hunters' Input Requested Regarding Dove Season Structure

11/8/07

Social Circle, Georgia - In response to recent public comment regarding Georgia's dove hunting season structure, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD) has created a convenient online dove season questionnaire, available at www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://%3ca/)>www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/). The purpose of the questionnaire is to provide hunters an opportunity to share their opinions on certain aspects of Georgia's current dove hunting season schedule. The 2007-2008 season runs Sept. 1-15, Oct. 6-15 and Nov. 22 - Jan. 5. Questionnaire responses will be considered as public input in the Department's effort to evaluate potential season alternatives.

"WRD recognizes and appreciates the desire recently expressed by many hunters for late-season dove hunting opportunity," says assistant chief of Game Management John Bowers. "We value public input in developing seasons and regulations that are not only biologically sound but that also reflect the desires of the public."

Classified as migratory birds by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), doves are regulated under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Under this authority, states must adhere to the USFWS framework which provides for an opening date no earlier than Sept. 1, a closing date no later than Jan. 15, no more than three seasons and a total of no more than 70 days. Georgia's current season conforms to this framework. However, considering the recent feedback regarding the desire for more late-season hunting opportunity (i.e. additional days in January), WRD is assessing the possibility of adjusting the current season structure to accommodate the public input. In order to do so, the proposition to adjust the current season must be presented and approved.

Upon assessment of public input, WRD will evaluate potential season alternatives and present these to the public through a series of public meetings in Jan. 2008. Based on those meeting responses, WRD may or may not propose a regulation change to the Board of Natural Resources. The board will review any submitted proposals in the spring of 2008.

Hunters and other interested parties can access the online survey at www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://%3ca/)>www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/) - click on "Hunting" and then the link "New: Dove Season Evaluation," located near the top of the page. The online evaluation is available through Jan. 18, 2008.

For more information or questions regarding the dove season survey, contact WRD Hunter Services at (770) 761-3045. For general information regarding dove season, visit www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://%3ca/)>www.gohuntgeorgia.com (http://www.gohuntgeorgia.com/) or call (770) 918-6416.

Media Contact:
Jennifer N. Barnes, (770) 918-6795