January 12, 2013 5:21:11 PM
Wildlife groups are sponsoring squirrel hunts for youths in seven counties across Mississippi on Feb. 9 to promote lifetimes of safe and responsible hunting.
Mississippi State University's Extension Service is partnering with the Mississippi Wildlife Federation, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Wildlife Services, and the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks to offer free squirrel hunts for 10- to 15-year-olds. Each site is limited to 20 participants. The deadline for registering is Jan. 21.
Hunts will take place in the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in Noxubee County as well as in the Canal Section Wildlife Management Area in Itawamba County; O'Keefe Wildlife Management Area in Quitman County; Copiah County Wildlife Management Area in Copiah County; Caney Creek Wildlife Management Area in Scott County; Howard Miller Wildlife Management Area in Issaquena County; and Pascagoula Wildlife Management Area in Jackson County.
Youths who have never hunted are eligible for the events. They must be accompanied by a parent, grandparent or guardian. Neither hunter education nor hunting licenses are necessary for these hunts.
The one-day events will include workshops on hunting safety, squirrel hunting with dogs, squirrel ecology and wildlife management. Participants must attend the workshops before the hunt. Guns and ammunition for target shooting and the hunt will be provided.
Participants are asked to bring a sack lunch or eat before arriving no later than noon. The hunt will begin after lunch and the seminar. Immediately after the hunt, there will be a demonstration on skinning and cleaning the harvested animals followed by a squirrel dinner.
For more information or to register, contact Chris McDonald at 601-757-2313 or firstname.lastname@example.org or online at mswildlife.org/events/youth-squirrel-hunt.php.