White Fronted Goose Hunt in Klamath Basin
By Gary Lewis
It's a hunt designed to shift pressure from private croplands to the refuges in the Klamath basin and it's focused on one species – the greater white-fronted goose.
GWF's, also called specklebellies or specks, begin flying through the basin in September on their way to the Sacramento Valley. In January, they start their way back north and stop off in the basin for two months or so.
And they've grown accustomed to free-loading. Over the last several years, the damage complaints prompted this hunt to encourage the birds to move back on to the refuges.
Because this is a damage hunt, there will be landowners looking to let hunters on their property, but if you're going unguided, get permission before the season starts.
"The last four, maybe five, years they've really been on the increase," said Darren Roe of Roe Outfitters. "The goose numbers are about 130,000 to 150,000 over the management objectives for the Pacific flyway. This is a depredation hunt. This is where they're doing the damage."
In the basin, they're calling this the spring goose season. Technically, it's still a late-winter hunt, from February 24 through March 10, 2007. Bag limit is two white-fronted geese with a possession limit of four geese.
FOR YOUR INFORMATION
Contact Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife at 503-947-6002 for information. The Klamath Falls ODFW Field Office can be reached at 541-883-5732.
Hunting is only allowed on private lands in Klamath County. Any public lands or waters owned or controlled by any county, state or federal agency are closed to hunting in this special season. Goose hunters must have, in addition to a HIP-validated hunting license, a Federal Waterfowl Stamp and a resident Waterfowl Validation. See the Oregon Game Bird Regulations.