Coastal Georgia Sees Strong Start to Hunting Seasons

By: Will Ricks, GA DNR Game Management Section, Assistant Region Supervisor (Region VII)

Sansavilla and Penholoway wildlife management areas had their early season deer adult-child firearms hunts this past weekend.  17 deer were harvested on Sansavilla, with one monster buck harvested by a kid!  Cason Buie harvested an 11-point buck with 20-inch main beams and a 16 .5 inch spread!  On Penholoway five deer were harvested out of 68 hunters. All in all, it was a great start to the deer season on the coast and hopefully this is a sign of things to come for the coastal deer season.

Cason Buie harvested this 11-point buck on Sansavilla WMA.

Altamaha WMA is looking forward to an excellent waterfowl season. Information from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s North American Waterfowl Management Plan shows breeding population estimates are at a record high.  Estimates are 43 percent above the long-term average, which means Altamaha should have another great waterfowl season. The Game Management Section of Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division banded three species of waterfowl over the summer. There were 179 bands placed on black-bellied whistling ducks, 13 on mottled ducks, and one on a wood duck. These bands enable us to better understand waterfowl movements within and outside the state.

Georgia DNR Game Management Section banding ducks on Altamaha WMA.

Altamaha has also seen an excellent early teal season, with many hunters reaching their limits and others coming close to the limit.  One hunter hunted Rhetts Island every morning it was open and reached his limit each morning.  Hunters sighted many blue-winged teal, mottled ducks, black-bellied whistling ducks, wood ducks, and northern shovelers which has hunters excited for the waterfowl season which begins Nov. 17.

A couple of happy hunters with their teal harvest on Altamaha WMA.

Waterfowl and Deer Seasons Going Strong

An 8-point buck harvested on Blanton Creek WMA in November.

The first of two adult/child hunts at Rum Creek WMA took place Dec. 10, where groups in attendance saw plenty of wood ducks, gadwalls, mallards and green winged teal.

Butler Island held its third quota hunt of the year on Dec. 10 as well.  The hunt was recorded as the third best in the history of quota hunts on the island, with 76 hunters harvesting 263 ducks!

Here are some updates from additional quota hunts:

  • FDR State Park, Quota Hunt (Dec. 6-7): 74 hunters harvested 8 bucks
  • Blanton Creek WMA, Quota Hunt (Dec. 8-9): 53 hunters harvested 3 deer
  • Paulks Pasture, Dog/Deer Quota Hunt (Dec. 9-10): 19 hunters harvested 7 deer and 2 hogs
  • Griffin Ridge, Quota Hunt (Dec. 8-10): 45 hunters harvested 7 deer and 1 hog (last quota hunt of the season)
  • Ossabaw Island Firearms Quota Hunt: 74 hunters harvested 36 deer and 29 hogs

Remember to visit our Flickr page to view photos from Georgia’s 2011 deer season by clicking HERE!