Saturday December 15, 2018

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Whatzup Outdoors

Whatzup Outdoors (268)

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department

 

Southeast

Arbuckle: December 10. Elevation normal, water 51 and clear to stained up creeks. Largemouth and smallmouth bass fair on Alabama rigs, shakey head jigs, crankbaits and jerk baits. Crappie excellent on CC spoons off ledges and on War Eagle spoons at 35-50 ft. near the dam. White bass excellent on spoons along ledges. Report submitted by Jack Melton.

Broken Bow: December 7. Elevation normal, water 54. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits and jigs around brush structure and standing timber. Blue catfish fair on cut bait and live bait in the main lake and around points. Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Eufaula: December 7. Elevation normal, water murky. White bass excellent on minnows, jigs and small lures below the dam, in coves and along the dam. Striped bass fair on minnows, jigs, shad and small lures below the dam and along the dam. Blue catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, shad and stinkbait. Report submitted by Cannon Harrison, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.

Hugo: December 7. Elevation normal, water 56 and murky. Blue and channel catfish fair on cut bait, dough bait, live bait and shad below the dam, main lake and river channel. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, channels, main lake river channel and standing timber. Report submitted by Andrew Potter, game warden stationed in Choctaw County.

Konawa: December 6. Elevation normal, water 46 and clear. Largemouth bass good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and plastic baits at 5-8 ft. in the main lake, around points, river channel and weed beds. Striped bass hybrids and white bass fair on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and live shad in coves, main lake and river channel. Channel catfish slow on chicken liver and cut bait in coves, creek channels and riprap. Report submitted by Garret Harley, game warden stationed in Seminole County.

Lower Mountain Fork: December 7. Elevation normal, water clear. Trout good on caddis flies along creek channels and shallows. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

McGee Creek: December 7. Elevation normal, water 56. Largemouth and spotted bass slow on flukes and plastic baits around brush structure, points and standing timber. Crappie slow on minnows along river channel and standing timber. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Atoka County.

Pine Creek: December 7. Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass fair on spoons and worms in coves and creek channels. Channel catfish good on cut bait in the main lake. Crappie fair on jigs around brush structure and river channel. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Robert S. Kerr: December 7. Elevation normal, water murky. Blue and channel catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, shad and stinkbait along channels, river channel and river mouth. Crappie and white bass excellent on minnows and jigs along channels, inlet, standing timber and stumps at Big Sanbois Creek. Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Haskell County.

Sardis: December 9. Elevation above normal, water 50. Largemouth and spotted bass slow on crankbaits, jigs, plastic baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, points and standing timber. Report submitted by Dane Polk, game warden stationed in Pushmataha County.

Texoma: December 8. Elevation normal, water 53 and muddy. Fishing has been good on the lake. Blue catfish good on cut bait and shad below the dam and main lake. Blue cats are being caught on shad cut bait, if jug lining for cats set jugs in 40-50 ft. of water. Crappie fair on minnows, hair jigs, jigs and tube jigs below the dam and along docks. Crappie are picking up in deep water under docks early in the mornings, use dark color jigs in muddy water. Tip: use scent attractant for crappie when bite is slow. Striped bass good on flukes, live bait, plastic baits and sassy shad along flats, main lake and tailwater. Striper being caught with dead sticking flukes, use electronics to locate fish and drift through the school with flukes at the appropriate depth. Report submitted by Trey Hale, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Wister: December 9. Elevation above normal, water cloudy. Largemouth bass fair on bill baits, crankbaits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits along channels, points and standing timber. Blue catfish good on chicken liver, shad and stinkbait along channels, main lake and points. Crappie good on minnows and jigs around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Thomas Gillham, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department 

 

Arbuckle: December 2. Elevation normal, water 51 and clear to stained up creeks. Largemouth and smallmouth bass fair to good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and jerk baits off rocky banks. Spotted bass slow. White bass excellent on War Eagle spoons off ledges in the main lake. Crappie good off docks very early in the morning and good at 45-50 ft. along ledges. Catfish being caught on juglines. Report submitted by Jack Melton.

Broken Bow: November 30. Elevation normal, water 54. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits, flukes and spoons around brush structure, points and standing timber. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver, punch bait and worms along channels, in coves and river channel. Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Eufaula: December 1. Elevation normal, water murky. White bass excellent on minnows and jigs below the dam and along the dam. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs in coves, around docks and below bridges. Blue catfish fair on hotdogs, shad and worms below the dam, along the dam, main lake and river mouth. Report submitted by Cannon Harrison, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.

Hugo: November 30. Elevation normal, water 50 and murky. Blue and channel catfish fair on cut bait, dough bait and shad below the dam, main lake and river channel. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, main lake and river channel. Report submitted by Andrew Potter, game warden stationed in Choctaw County.

Konawa: November 29. Elevation normal, water 49 and clear. Largemouth bass good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and plastic baits in the main lake, around points, river channel and weed beds. Striped bass hybrids and white bass fair on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and live shad in coves, main lake and river channel. Channel catfish slow on chicken liver and cut bait in coves, creek channels, inlet and riprap. Largemouth bass good on Alabama rigs at 7-10 ft. along weed lines and on deep diving crankbaits along ledges and drop-offs. Report submitted by Garret Harley, game warden stationed in Seminole County.

Lower Mountain Fork: December 4. Stocked approximately 2,700 rainbow trout on November 29. Report submitted by April Drake, secretary at the southeast region office.

Lower Mountain Fork: November 30. Elevation normal, water clear. Trout good on caddis flies, PowerBait and small lures along creek channels and spillway. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

McGee Creek: November 30. Elevation normal, water 56 and clear. Largemouth and spotted bass slow on crankbaits and plastic baits along creek channels and points. Crappie slow on minnows along channels, creek channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Atoka County.

Pine Creek: November 30. Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass fair on jigs, spinnerbaits and spoons along channels and in coves. Crappie fair on small lures and spoons along creek channels and standing timber. Channel catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, punch bait and worms. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Robber’s Cave: December 4. Stocked approximately 675 rainbow trout on November 29. Report submitted by April Drake, secretary at the southeast region office.

Robert S. Kerr: November 30. Elevation normal, water murky. Blue and channel catfish fair on cut bait, dough bait, shad and stinkbait along inlet, river channel and river mouth. Crappie and white bass good on minnows and jigs along creek channels, inlet and standing timber. Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Haskell County.

Texoma: November 30. Elevation normal, water 54 and muddy. Fishing is good on the lake and below the dam. Dead sticking on the lake is good colors include (flukes) pink and white with orange heads. Blue catfish good on cut bait, live bait, live shad and shad below the dam and main lake. Below dam, fishing has been good for striper and blue cats, use casting cork and glitter flukes for striper and cut shad/drum for blues in early mornings. Striped bass good on flukes, live shad, sassy shad and slabs below the dam and main lake. Look for birds working for indicators of feeding stripers. Throw sassy shad with slow retrieve under working birds.  Crappie fair on live bait and tube jigs below the dam and around docks. Crappie being caught in 20-30 ft. of water on jigs under docks where structure is present. Report submitted by Trey Hale, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Wister: November 30. Elevation normal, water cloudy. Largemouth bass good on bill baits, crankbaits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits along channels and standing timber. Blue catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, shad and stinkbait along channels and main lake. Crappie good on minnows and jigs around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Thomas Gillham, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.

Press release 

 

Oklahoma’s 16-day deer gun season will run Nov. 17 through Dec. 2.


With more than 187,000 expected participants, the season is the state’s most popular hunting event in terms of participation. It is also the deer season that boasts the greatest success rate in terms of harvest each year. Firearms accounted for 57.7 percent of all deer harvested in the 2017-18 seasons. That amounted to 62,257 deer, the highest total for gun harvest since 2012.


All things considered, deer gun season hunters should find ample opportunities for success in 2018.


“With timely rainfall throughout the growing season in much of the state, habitat is generally in great shape,” said Dallas Barber, big game biologist for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.


Acorns and other food sources are in good supply. Those hunters who take note of deer feeding patterns as the season opener approaches will have an advantage.


The deer breeding season, known as the rut, will peak over the next few weeks, which means deer will be more active during daylight hours. During the week prior to opening day, the Department will issue its annual Deer Rut Report, which will offer hunters valuable insights on deer movement and hunting prospects using the most recent information available from all regions of the state. 

 

Fueling deer hunting’s popularity in Oklahoma is a management plan that serves the state’s diverse hunters’ interests by providing region-leading season lengths and bag limits along with a strong education component outlining the benefits of balanced sex ratios and selective buck harvest.


Jerry Shaw, regional supervisor in the Department’s Wildlife Division, said Oklahoma offers generous seasons and bag limits while still having one of the healthiest buck age structures in the nation.


“Our hunters have taken the ‘Hunters in the Know ... Let Young Bucks Grow’ message to heart, and the results are being seen in fields and woods across the state. Today we have more mature bucks than at any time in our state’s past. And it is all thanks to hunters following our lead and allowing many of our young bucks to walk and grow another year.”


Central to this voluntary management approach is reminding hunters that every time they choose to pull the trigger or release an arrow, they are making a deer management decision. “Equally as important as the deer you take are the deer you pass on and let walk away,” Shaw said. “While the ODWC provides the direction, it is the hunters who are putting the management in place.”


The statistics bear this out. Last year, 28 percent of all deer harvested were in the 0.5-year and 1.5-year age classes, while 49 percent of the harvest was in the 3.5-year and 4.5-year age classes.


The Department’s balanced voluntary approach with its “Hunters in the Know” campaign has gained national attention in recent years. The Quality Deer Management Association recognized Oklahoma among the top five states showing declines in yearling buck harvests.


But antlerless deer harvest remains an important component of the state’s deer management plan, Shaw said. “Adequate doe harvest is vital to keep populations in balance with the available habitat, maintain healthy buck-to-doe ratios, and synchronize fawning when conditions are the most favorable for fawn growth.


“Even if your freezer is full, you can always donate the deer to the Hunters Against Hunger program and provide nutritious, delicious food for someone less fortunate,” Shaw said.


From the largest outdoor and sporting goods stores in the major metropolitan cities to the smallest of cafes and roadside motels in rural outposts across the state, deer hunting has a sizable economic impact estimated at more than $600 million a year.


It wasn’t always this way. From the time of Oklahoma’s first deer hunting season in 1933 until well into the 1960s, the forests of southeastern Oklahoma were about the only places with huntable populations of whitetails. As part of what has become one of conservation’s greatest success stories, the Wildlife Department began successfully trapping and transplanting deer from the 1950s through the 1970s.


Now, the state’s deer population is estimated to be well over 500,000 animals. And deer hunters in Oklahoma have a better chance of harvesting a deer than at any other time in the state’s history.


Barber urged deer hunters to also do their part for future generations.


“Seeing how far we have come, it’s important to remind hunters not only to be deer managers, but to share their heritage with others as well, so that this tradition of success is passed down and continued.”


For complete rules and regulations, consult the current Oklahoma Hunting Guide.

 

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department

 

Southeast

Arbuckle: October 27. Elevation 6 1/2 ft. above normal, water 69 and stained. Watch for floating logs on the lake. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits and soft plastic baits at 8-10 ft. and on spoons and spinnerbaits at 35 ft. on the main lake along underwater ridges. White bass and crappie being caught on spoons.  Report submitted by Jack Melton.

Blue River: October 30. Elevation above normal, water 64 and clear. Smallmouth, largemouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits, jerk baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure and points. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait and stinkbait along rocks and deeper pools on the edge of currents. Rainbow trout are scheduled to be stocked in all areas except the Catch and Release portion of the river on October 30. The Catch and Release portion will receive its initial stocking on November 8. Report submitted by Matt Gamble, biologist at the Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area.

Broken Bow: October 26. Elevation below normal, water 74. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits and plastic baits below the dam and around points. Crappie good on jigs, minnows and slabs around brush structure and standing timber. Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Eufaula: October 26. Elevation above normal, water murky. Striped bass excellent on cut bait, live bait, live shad and shad below the dam and along the dam. Crappie fair on jigs in coves, along dam, docks and main lake. Blue catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, live bait, live shad and worms under bridges, main lake, river channel and river mouth. Report submitted by Cannon Harrison, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.

Hugo: October 26. Elevation above normal, water 71 and murky. Flood mitigation continues, with intermittent gate openings at Hugo Dam. Water flow and high water levels continue to be favorable for cat fishing. Blue, channel and flathead catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, live bait and shad below the dam, along channels, creek channels, main lake and river channel. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, creek channels, main lake, river channel and standing timber. Report submitted by Andrew Potter, game warden stationed in Choctaw County.

Konawa: October 25. Elevation normal, water 65 and clear. Largemouth bass good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits, jigs and plastic baits in the main lake, around points, river channel and weed beds. Striped bass hybrids and white bass fair on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and live shad in coves, main lake and river channel. Channel catfish slow on chicken liver, cut bait and stinkbait in coves, creek channels, riprap and weed beds. Report submitted by Garret Harley, game warden stationed in Seminole County.

Lower Mountain Fork: October 26. Elevation normal, water clear. Trout good on PowerBait, small lures and worms along channels and rocks. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Lower Mountain Fork: October 26. Stocked approximately 2,300 rainbow trout on October 22. Report submitted by April Drake, secretary at the southeast region office.

McGee Creek: October 26. Elevation 3 1/2 ft. above normal. Largemouth and spotted bass good on crankbaits, flukes and jigs around brush structure, points and standing timber. Channel catfish fair on dough bait and stinkbait along creek channels, river channel and river mouth. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Atoka County.

Pine Creek: October 26. Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass fair on plastic baits along channels, in coves and points. Crappie fair on jigs in coves. Channel catfish good on cut bait and shrimp along creek channels. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Robber’s Cave: October 26. Stocked approximately 600 rainbow trout on October 22. Report submitted by April Drake, secretary at the southeast region office.

Robert S. Kerr: October 26. Elevation normal, water murky. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on Alabama rigs, bill baits, lipless baits and tube jigs around points, riprap, river channel and rocks. Blue and channel catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, shad and stinkbait along flats, inlet, river channel and river mouth. Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Haskell County.

Sardis: October 24. Elevation above normal, water 68. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on jerk baits, lipless baits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, points, rocks, shorelines, standing timber and weed beds. Blue, channel and flathead catfish fair on cut bait, shad and sunfish along flats, main lake and shorelines. Crappie fair on jigs, minnows and tube jigs around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Dane Polk, game warden stationed in Pushmataha County.

Texoma: October 26. Elevation above normal, water muddy. Blue and channel catfish good on shad below the dam. Flathead catfish fair on sunfish below the dam. Striped and white bass good on live shad and topwater lures along flats, main lake and river channel. With the release of water at Denison Dam, the catfishing is good throughout most of the day, Blues and channels are biting well on cut shad and cut drum. Most fishermen use small pieces of worm to catch drum and then fillet drum using the fillets for bait. Flatheads are being caught on live baits such as perch, shad, small drum. Striper fishing in the main lake is doing well, look for working birds for surface feeding and when this isn't present dropping live shad is most productive. Report submitted by Trey Hale, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Wister: October 26. Elevation above normal, water cloudy. Largemouth bass good on bill baits, crankbaits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Blue catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, hotdogs and shad along channels and main lake. Crappie good on minnows and jigs around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Thomas Gillham, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department

 


Winter will be here soon enough, but anglers don’t have to put away their gear. Here are some current updates about fishing, which can be great anytime of the year in Outdoor Oklahoma!


TROUT SEASON ARRIVES SOON
The weather might be getting colder, but the fishing action is getting ready to heat up at the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s seasonal trout fishing areas across the state.
Each year, by Nov. 1 and continuing into March or April, the Wildlife Department stocks trout in six public fishing areas: Perry CCC/Lake Perry Park, Robbers Cave, Blue River, Lake Watonga, Medicine Creek and Lake Carl Etling. For more information, go to wildlifedepartment.com/fishing/trout-information

 


In addition to these “cold weather” trout fisheries, the Department also operates two year-round trout fisheries in the Lower Mountain Fork River below Broken Bow dam and in the Lower Illinois River below Tenkiller Ferry Dam. Trout are normally stocked in these areas every week or two, as long as water conditions allow for trout survival.


Trout stocking is on schedule for all areas except the catch-and-release portion of the Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area, which won't receive fish until Nov. 8.


Trout, both rainbows and browns, are introduced species to Oklahoma. They thrive in colder waters and make excellent table fare. Using ultralight fishing gear with 4- to 6-pound test line and small hooks can lead to some thrilling action. But anyone can catch trout using regular angling gear with small jigs or spinners, prepared bait or live bait.


Trout fishing is also available from Dec. 1 to Feb. 28 at two Close to Home Fishing locations in major urban areas: Oklahoma City's Dolese Youth Park Pond and Jenks' Veterans Park Pond.
For complete trout fishing regulations, including daily and size limits, restricted areas and maps, consult the current Oklahoma Hunting and Fishing Regulations Guide found online at wildlifedepartment.com or in print across the state wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold.
FLY FISHING SCHOOL ENROLLING
Enrollment is underway for the Illinois River Fly Fishing School. The 2019 session will be Feb. 22-23 at Tenkiller State Park and on the banks of the Illinois River.


This will be the 31st year that Patton Fly Fishing has conducted the course, which is always a great holiday gift for any angler. Early registration is suggested.


This basic course includes sessions on tackle and gear, knots, flies, fly selection and casting techniques. On Saturday afternoon, participants receive on-stream instruction. Fly rods will be available for loan Saturday. A state fishing license is not required for students during course instruction.


Instructors will be Mark Patton, Tom Adams, Blake Patton and Tre Dupuy.


Course fee is $175, with a $50 deposit due at enrollment. Saturday meals at $35, if desired. For more information, click here or call (405) 613-6520.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department


Youth deer hunters had their opportunity to hunt with a gun this past weekend, and now all deer hunters in Oklahoma will get the chance to harvest deer using a firearm starting this Saturday. The state’s 2018 deer muzzleloader hunting season will open Oct. 27 and run nine days through Nov. 4.


According to the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s most recent Big Game Report, available in the current issue of Outdoor Oklahoma magazine, an estimated 79,200 hunters participated in deer muzzleloader season last year. And while the number of muzzleloader hunters had been on a downward trend since 2004, last year’s participation bucked that trend, with a 5 percent increase in hunters from the 2016 season.


With more muzzleloader hunters in the woods in 2017, the number of harvested deer reported was also up. The total take of 16,564 deer was the highest muzzleloader harvest since 2012. This accounts for about 15 percent of the state’s total deer harvest for the 2017-18 seasons.


Muzzleloader hunting seasons for elk on private lands and for black bears in southeastern Oklahoma will also be open from Oct. 27 to Nov. 4. Various zone quotas are in effect for elk, and a harvest quota of 20 is in effect for bears.
Deer are plentiful in every part of Oklahoma, whether in the wide-open prairies in the northwest or the pine-covered mountains in the southeast. Some wildlife management areas across the state are open to hunting for at least part of the muzzleloader season, some through controlled hunt drawings that give sportsmen a unique opportunity to change up their usual hunting routine.


To learn more about deer hunting on WMAs, consult the Special Area Regulations in the current Oklahoma Hunting and Fishing Regulations Guide or go online to wildlifedepartment.com. The website offers regulations, useful hunting information and a digital WMA atlas. In addition to detailed maps, sportsmen and sportswomen can find information about designated camping sites and contacts for WMA biologists.


Muzzleloader hunters in most of the state may also harvest a turkey the final two days of deer muzzleloader season, as that will be opening weekend of the regular fall turkey gun season. A fall turkey license is required, unless exempt. The map of open areas and other turkey season details are available in the current Oklahoma Hunting and Fishing Regulations Guide.


The regular archery deer hunting season has been underway since Oct. 1. The deer gun season will open Nov. 17 and run through Dec. 2.


All hunters who will be out beginning Saturday, Oct. 27, are reminded that requirements for wearing hunter orange clothing will be in effect.


For complete information and license requirements, consult the current Oklahoma Hunting and Fishing Regulations Guide found online at wildlifedepartment.com or in print across the state wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold.

 

 

________________________________________

Leilana McKindra, Communications Specialist, Agricultural Communications Services

 

STILLWATER, Okla. (Oct. 18, 2018) – As another deer hunting season ramps up in Oklahoma, wildlife experts are raising awareness about an always fatal neurological disease that affects deer and elk.

 

Chronic Wasting Disease attacks the brain of cervids, or animals in the deer family, including white-tailed deer, mule deer and elk. There is no treatment for or vaccine against the disease.

 

CWD has been detected in 23 states, including Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri and Arkansas. It also has been detected in two Canadian provinces. While CWD is not currently known to be present in Oklahoma, the disease has been detected in captive deer in Oklahoma in the past.

 

“Chronic Wasting Disease is not new, but there is continued lack of awareness with the public. There is also some misinformation out there that this disease isn’t a concern to deer or deer hunters. Neither of which is true,” said Dwayne Elmore, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension wildlife specialist and Bollenback Chair in Wildlife Management. “While it has not yet impacted free-ranging deer in Oklahoma, it has affected surrounding states and poses a significant risk to our deer populations.”

 

Visible symptoms of CWD include, but are not limited to, stumbling, lack of coordination and drooping ears, but the disease has a long incubation period of a year or more. Those factors leave hunters with no certain way to tell if an animal is infected.

 

While CWD has not been shown to cause disease in humans, disease experts advise caution as the possibility of transmission to humans has not been ruled out. CWD is part of the prion family of diseases, which also includes bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or mad cow disease, as well as variant Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease, the human form of mad cow disease.

 

“One of the problems with the disease is the long incubation period. Related diseases in humans may go undetected for many years,” said Elmore, who stressed that hunters who harvest cervids from a known CWD area such as parts of Colorado and Wyoming need to have the animal tested.

 

Most states with CWD present offer testing, and many times it is done at no charge to the hunter. Additional information is available on the various states’ wildlife agency websites.

 

Testing is not currently recommended in Oklahoma since the state has not detected CWD in wild deer. The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation has been monitoring for the disease since 1999 and will advise the public of any status changes.

 

“If an animal tests positive for CWD, do not consume the meat,” Elmore said. “Also, limiting contact with spinal fluid and not consuming lymph, brain or spinal tissue is highly recommended.”

 

Wildlife biologists recommend specific deer carcass handling practices to help reduce the potential spread of the disease.

 

When possible, deer carcasses should be buried on the property where they were harvested. Remains also may be disposed of via regular household garbage collection that is transported to an approved, lined landfill. Or, if it is not possible to bury the carcass where it was harvested, leave the remains in place.

 

Carcasses should not be disposed of in ponds, lakes or waterways; by burning; or hauled to another property where it was not originally harvested.

 

“This is a concern for Oklahomans hunting out of the state in known CWD areas,” Elmore said. “For Oklahoma hunters hunting in the state, they should be aware and pay attention to the ODWC for news regarding the current situation. But, at present, there is no immediate cause for concern for deer harvested within the state.”

 

For more information about CWD, contact the nearest county Extension office or the ODWC.



 

 

Press release

 

WILBURTON, OK (Oct. 17, 2018) – Get your running shoes laced up and get ready for Eastern Oklahoma State College’s third annual Mountaineer 5K on Saturday, Nov. 10 at 8 a.m. in downtown Wilburton. This year’s event will also feature a 1-Mile Fun Run.


The races are part of Eastern’s 2018 Homecoming festivities and are being hosted by the Eastern Alumni Association. All age groups are encouraged to participate by running or walking.


Pre-registration is open now through Oct. 29 and guarantees a race T-shirt. Pre-registration costs $30 for adults or $25 for Eastern students and students K-12.

 

Late and on-site registration will cost $35 with T-shirts available on a first come, first served basis. All race proceeds will benefit the Eastern Alumni Scholarship Fund.


Participants will meet on the west side of the former Corner Café located at the intersection of Main St. and Central Ave.

 

The course was measured by Ken Hardwick and has been certified by USA Track and Field (USATF). It follows the shortest possible route over the roadway starting south from the intersection of Pacific Ave. and Central Ave., east along Ash Ave., north on SE 6th St., east on Rock Island Ave., curves southeast, west, then straight south along Pleasant Hill Rd. to the gate before the bridge, and back to the starting point.


This year’s runs are registered with the Choctaw Nation’s Promoting Active Communities Everywhere (PACE) program. The initiative promotes the importance of regular physical activity through running or walking and is free and open to the public. Applicants need only to reside in the Choctaw Nation service area to be eligible. Members are sponsored for a designated number of PACE-approved walks/runs throughout the year. PACE registrations are also due by Oct. 29.


Elite Race Company will provide accurate run-times by using the IPICO chip timing system. The system uses small tracking chips which are placed in a disposable bib ring. Medallions will be awarded to the top three finishers in multiple age categories and the first overall male and female participant will receive a plaque.


Visit eosc.edu/homecoming to download a registration form and for more details about Eastern’s 2018 Homecoming week.

 

For more information on the Choctaw Nation’s PACE program, including an application form and race registration form, visit cnhsa.com and search for PACE.

 

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department

Arbuckle: October 7. Elevation 2 ft. above normal and rising, water 71 and clear except upper creeks. Largemouth bass good on chigger craws, tube jigs, grubs and crankbaits. Smallmouth bass good on grubs and spinnerbaits off points. Spotted bass good on grubs and worms. Crappie fair on chartreuse jigs and minnows around brush piles. White bass being caught on minnows and grubs up on flats chasing shad. Report submitted by Jack Melton.

Blue River: October 8. Elevation above normal, water 68 and murky. Channel catfish good on chicken liver, stinkbait and worms along shorelines. All other fishing slow due to heightened flow. Report submitted by Matt Gamble, biologist at the Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area.

Broken Bow: October 5. Elevation below normal, water 82. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits, flukes and plastic baits around brush structure and points. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs around brush structure and standing timber. Report submitted by Dane Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Eufaula: October 5. Elevation normal, water turbid. White bass excellent on cut bait, jigs and small lures below the dam, along the dam and discharge. Crappie fair on minnows around docks, main lake and bridges. Spotted bass good on small lures and worms along riprap, shallows and standing timber. Report submitted by Cannon Harrison, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.

Hugo: October 5. Elevation above normal, water 76 and murky. Blue, channel and flathead catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, live bait and shad below the dam, main lake and river channel. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, channels, main lake, river channel and standing timber. Outflow from flood gates continues at Hugo Dam. Report submitted Andrew Potter, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Konawa: October 4. Elevation normal, water 80 and clear. Largemouth bass good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits, jigs, plastic baits and topwater lures in the main lake, around points, river channel and weed beds. Striped bass hybrids and white bass good on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and live shad in coves, main lake and river channel. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait and stinkbait in coves, creek channels, inlet and riprap. Report submitted by Garret Harley, game warden stationed in Seminole County.

Lower Mountain Fork: October 4. Stocked approximately 3,800 rainbow trout on October 3. Report submitted by April Drake, secretary at the southeast region office.

Lower Mountain Fork: October 6. Elevation normal, water clear. Trout fair caddis flies, PowerBait, tube jigs and worms along channels and rocks. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

McGee Creek: October 6. Elevation above normal, water 77. Largemouth and spotted bass good on Alabama rigs, flukes and plastic baits along channels, creek channels, points and rocks. Crappie, spotted bass and white bass fair on minnows along creek channels, river channel and standing timber. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Atoka County.

Pine Creek: October 6. Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass good on topwater lures in the main lake. Crappie excellent on jigs around brush structure. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver and worms along creek channels and main lake. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Robert S. Kerr: October 5. Elevation normal, water murky. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on Alabama rigs, bill baits, flukes, lipless baits, plastic baits, spinnerbaits and tube jigs around brush structure, channels, in coves, creek channels, points and riprap. Blue, channel and flathead catfish good on cut bait, dough bait, live shad, shad, stinkbait and sunfish along channels, creek channels, flats, inlet and river mouth. Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Haskell County.

Sardis: October 3. Elevation above normal, water 77. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on crankbaits, plastic baits, spinnerbaits and tube jigs around brush structure, creek channels, rocks, shorelines, standing timber and weed beds. Blue, channel and flathead catfish fair on cut bait, shad and sunfish along channels, flats, main lake and shorelines. Crappie fair on minnows, jigs and tube jigs around brush structure and standing timber. Report submitted by Dane Polk, game warden stationed in Pushmataha County.

Texoma: October 5. Elevation above normal, water 79 and muddy. Striped bass good on live shad at 20-40 ft. in the main lake; larger fish have slowed a bit. Well maintained live bait is key right now. Blue and channel catfish fair on live bait, live shad and worms below the dam and in the main lake. Blue cats and channel cats are feeding at the mouths of feeder creeks on cut shad and worms. Crappie slow on hair jigs and live bait around brush structure and in the main lake. Crappie are slow with muddy water. Report submitted by Trey Hale, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Wister: October 5. Elevation normal, water cloudy. Largemouth bass good on bill baits, buzz baits, crankbaits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, channels, points and shorelines. Blue catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, hot dogs, punch bait and stinkbait along channels, main lake and points. Crappie good on minnows and jigs around brush structure, channels, points and standing timber. Report submitted by Thomas Gillham, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.

Press release

 

 


The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation is partnering with the National Rifle Association to offer an online hunter education course to Oklahomans. The course replaces the Wildlife Department's previously offered online course.


"This free course from the NRA will allow us to maintain high quality hunter education training at no cost to the Wildlife Department or our hunters,” said Lance Meek, hunter education coordinator for the Wildlife Department.


The free hunter education course is available online on the Wildlife Department's website at www.wildlifedepartment.com/education

 

 The same webpage also provides a schedule of classroom-taught hunter education courses led by certified instructors at locations across the state.


Hunter education topics include firearms safety, wildlife conservation and identification, safe archery and more. The classes help people become safe, legal and ethical hunters. The course is required for most hunters ages 10-30 who wish to hunt without a mentor present.


"We've always tried to make classes convenient for our hunters," Meek said. “The online class is great because it allows students to take the course at their own pace, even over the course of several days.”


The online course also offers young students the benefit of involving parents in learning about safe hunting. "I love the idea of the kids sitting down with their parents to work through the hunter safety curriculum," Meek said.

 

"Parents or mentors are a critical part of the process of becoming a hunter."


On the other hand, Meek said the in-class courses held throughout the state are a great opportunity to learn about hunting from a certified instructor in a structured setting.


Any Oklahoma resident 10 or older may complete the online course and print a hunter education certification card upon completion of the online final exam.

 

Youths 9 and younger may take the course for knowledge but are not eligible for certification; instead, these youths may buy an apprentice-designated hunting license.

 

Apprentice-designated licenses also may be used by anyone 30 or younger.

 

Hunter education certification is not required for anyone 31 or older in Oklahoma.

 

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