The Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission approved the state’s 2019-20 waterfowl seasons during its April 25 meeting in Colby.

Waterfowlers will get their first taste of action during the teal season, which runs from Sept. 14-29 in the Low Plains Zones and Sept. 21-29 in the High Plains Unit.

The youth duck season then runs Oct. 5-6 in the Low Plains Early Zone and High Plains Unit. In the Low Plains Late Zone, the youth season runs two weeks later, Oct. 19-20, and it will be another three weeks before the Low Plains Southeast Zone’s youth season Nov. 2-3.

The Low Plains Early Zone’s regular duck season runs from Oct. 12 to Dec. 8 for its first segment and Dec. 14-29 for its second segment. The Low Plains Late Zone, meanwhile, runs Oct. 26 to Dec. 29 and Jan. 18-26, 2020.

The High Plains Unit duck season also starts Oct. 12, with its first segment running through Jan. 5, 2020, and its second segment Jan. 17-26. The last duck season, which takes place in the Low Plains Southeast Zone, runs from Nov. 9 to Jan. 5, 2020, and Jan. 11-26.

The Canada goose and light goose season has a two-day first segment Oct. 26-27, followed by a second segment Nov. 6 through Feb. 16, 2020. There is also a Light Goose Conservation Order extended season Feb. 17 through April 30, 2020, during which time there is no bag limit on light geese and shotguns may be unplugged to allow for maximum shell capacity.

The white-fronted goose season also starts Oct. 26 and runs through Dec. 29, with a second segment Jan. 17-26, 2020.

Other actions approved by the KWPT Commission include:

• In a 6-0 vote, commissioners voted in favor of amending current furbearer regulations to clarify how to measure the jaw spread on body-gripping and foothold traps.

• Commissioners approved an amendment to current furbearer regulations eliminating the requirement that furharvesters permanently surrender the lower canine teeth of an otter when presenting it to the department for tagging.

• Commissioners approved amendments to current bobcat trapping regulations, removing outdated provisions related to tagging and effective dates on nonresident bobcat hunting permits.

• Passing 6-0, commissioners voted to accept an amendment to current fur dealer regulations that will allow the sale of swift fox pelts from states that don’t have tagging requirements for swift foxes.

• A series of amendments to regulations which establish hunting, fishing and furharvesting restrictions on department-managed lands. Current restrictions can be viewed on ksoutdoors.com by clicking “Laws, Regulations and Enforcement,” “Law and Regulations,” then “All Regulations.” See K.A.R. 115-8-1.

• Amendments that will simplify the application process for field trial permits, removing extensive event mapping requirements.

• An amendment to current dove hunting regulations that will remove pellet guns as a legal method of take.

The next KWPT Commission meeting is scheduled for June 13 at the Rolling Hills Zoo, 625 N. Hedville Road in Salina.

 

Squirrel event on tap

The 2019 Kansas squirrel hunting season kicks off June 1, and to mark the occasion, an assisted squirrel hunting event is slated in Manhattan.

The event is geared toward beginners and requires pre-registration by calling Tuttle Creek State Park at 785-539-7941. Some firearms are available for those who need them, and guides will be provided.

The event will begin with an 8:30 a.m. check-in at Fancy Creek Range to sight in guns, with guided hunts beginning at 9:30 a.m. at various locations. One to three hunters will be assigned per guide, which can be from one family, friends or placed in a group. A hunting license or apprentice hunting license is required for hunters 16 years and older. A non-licensed observing participant may accompany the hunting party.

Participants will return to Fancy Creek at 1:30 p.m. to clean squirrels, which will then be served for lunch at 3 p.m.

Limited spots are available, and participation is free. Participants should plan to bring food and snacks.

The squirrel season continues through Feb. 28, 2020. The daily bag limit is five, with a possession limit of 20.