DNR: Pheasant season kicks off in Upper Peninsula

MICHIGAN — Pheasant hunting season is approaching in Michigan, and the Department of Natural Resources has released vital information for anyone who would like to participate.

Pheasant hunting season dates are as follows:

• Oct. 10-31 in the Upper Peninsula in Menominee County and portions of Iron, Marquette, Dickinson and Delta counties;

• Oct. 20-Nov. 14 in the Lower Peninsula; and

• Dec. 1-Jan. 1 in selected areas of zone 3.

See the DNR’s 2018 Hunting Digest for maps of open hunting zones. The bag limit is two male pheasants daily, with four in possession. A base license is required to hunt pheasants.

“A few years ago, Outdoor Life magazine rated Michigan’s Thumb in the top 10 places in the country to go wild pheasant hunting, which points to the fact that pheasant hunting is still alive and well in our state,” said Al Stewart, DNR upland game bird specialist. “The DNR and our partners are making progress towards creating more quality pheasant hunting opportunities with the Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative, a collaborative effort to revitalize Michigan pheasants.”

While pheasant populations have been in decline for several years, pheasants can be found in southern Lower Michigan and some areas of the Upper Peninsula. The best counties for pheasant hunting are in south-central to mid-Michigan and into the Thumb.

In the U.P., Menominee County is a great place to begin a pheasant-hunting adventure.

There are some localized concentrations of birds elsewhere based on habitat availability. Stewart advises hunters to look for warm-season grasses, especially idled farm fields. Late-season hunters can have success in cattail and shrub lands adjoining picked agricultural fields.

The Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative is currently working to restore and enhance Michigan pheasant habitat, populations and hunting opportunities on private and public lands.

The initiative works by acquiring state and federal resources to assist landowners within cooperatives in improving wildlife habitat on their property and by enhancing habitat on selected state game areas, recreation areas, and other public and private lands.

Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative partners work to secure adequate staffing to accomplish habitat improvement; hunter access; education and outreach; hunter recruitment, retention and reactivation; and population monitoring goals.

“It has been exciting to see what the MPRI coalition of partners has been doing over the last few years to improve pheasant habitat, pheasant numbers and pheasant hunting in southern Michigan,” said Bill Vander Zouwen, Pheasants Forever Representative and MPRI Coalition co-chair. “I am really looking forward to seeing what the next few years will bring.”

Learn more about the new Adopt-a-Game-Area program, where to hunt or the Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative at www.michigan.gov/dnr.

avatar

Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or akorienek@pioneergroup.com

Leave a Reply