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Hunting rules differ on public grasslands

By David Talley | Published Saturday, November 5, 2016
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Dawn Patrol

DAWN PATROL – A hunter waits for game in the early morning. Shooting at the LBJ Grasslands is restricted to daylight hours. For a full list of rules for hunting lands, check with the Caddo/LBJ National Grasslands district office, 940-627-5475. Messenger Photo by Joe Duty

General hunting season for whitetail deer and turkey is now open in Texas.

While many hunters head for private land when the season starts, those choosing to hunt on the Lyndon B. Johnson National Grasslands will face a slightly different set of rules and regulations.

For a full list of Texas guidelines, visit tpwd.texas.gov/regulations or check the 2016-2017 Texas Parks and Wildlife Hunting Annual. For information on hunting in the Grasslands, call 940-627-5475 or visit the district office at 1400 U.S. 81/287.

Hunting is allowed with a valid Texas hunting/fishing license on all Grasslands property except the Black Creek Lake unit.

Fluorescent orange is required for all hunters on the LBJ during any permitted season, with the exception of migratory birds, turkeys and bow hunters. A minimum of 144 square inches of orange must be visible on both the chest and back with a fluorescent orange hat. Non-hunters visiting the grasslands during the season are also encouraged to take measures to make themselves more visible.

Firearms on the Grasslands are limited to shotguns, black powder rifles and bows. Target practice is limited to shotguns on unit 3.

Baiting game isn’t permitted, and hunting stands and blinds are limited to temporary structures that don’t require digging or damage to trees. Stands and blinds can be in place for up to 72 hours.

Harvesting doe on the Grasslands is limited to Nov. 24-27 and in January for youth.

Forest Service roads are open only to street-legal vehicles. Avoid driving on muddy roads. No motorized vehicles are permitted on double-track and other Grasslands trails.

Night hunting for predators and varmints is allowed, but notifying the Wise County Sheriff’s Office at 940-627-5971 is encouraged when hunting outside of the traditional sunrise to sunset shooting window.

Be aware of fire conditions before lighting campfires and before heading out to hunt, give someone details about where you’ll be and carry extra supplies, clothes and a map in case of an emergency.

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