Deer season extended to February

Published 12:23 am Friday, October 11, 2013

There will be at least two significant – and some would say wonderful – changes for hunters when the 2013 season begins.

Randall Lee, state conservation officer, spoke about those changes at a Wednesday meeting of the Andalusia Lions Club.

“Some (changes) will affect every deer and turkey hunter, while others will only impact a portion of the state’s deer hunting population,” Lee said. “Two big changes is that the deer season has been extended for Covington County until into February – I know hunters will love that – and the second is that hunters can use corn.

“Now that doesn’t mean you can hunt over bait – that’s still against the law,” he said. “What that means is the law says you can have it 100 yards or more from you and it can’t be within your line of sight. It can’t be behind a hay bale or a sheet of plywood in the middle of a field. It has to be out of sight by natural vegetation or naturally occurring terrain.”

Lee said it’s recommended that the feed should not be poured, piled or placed directly on the ground.

“That’s a perfect opportunity for the wild hogs,” he said. “I would recommend a feeder.”

Lee said the season, which usually ended in January, has been extended into February – giving hunters more time in the woods.

“Actually, it ends on Feb. 10,” he said. “Bow season begins on Oct. 25, while the regular season begins on Nov. 23.”

Lee recommended obtaining a new state hunting and fishing digest to read up on the new laws “before hitting the woods.”

As for hunting on the Conecuh National Forest, Lee said it’s too early to determine how the government shutdown will impact the season.

“We have to hope things are settled down by then,” Lee said. “A good number of hunters take advantage of hunting on the forest.”

Over the years, the number of hunters has declined, Lee said.

“We want to see the sport become more popular,” he said. “These days, a lot of people say they don’t have time, but hopefully, that will change.”