I recently received a private missive from inquiring about summer exercise land and hunts during the season. I won’t, can’t reveal the details of the note without the writers permission, but it brings up some thoughts that I have been having regarding the state of small game hunting in Alabama
While the wildlife of Alabama belongs to the citizens of Alabama, they have little actual control or enjoyment because the majority of the land is private land that is leased out to those who will pay the most. And that is Deer/turkey hunters with a large portion of them being non resident.
Most leases in Alabama are controlled by deer/turkey hunters who don’t want small game hunters on the property before after during or between seasons. Add to that Plum Creek’s attitude and you’ll find that Uncle NoPass who often said that “deers will be the ruination of hunting” was right as he was about so many things
It is my opinion that the Alabama Conservation Advisory Board is firmly in the grasp of the deer and turkey hunters.
The first meeting of CAB (Alabama Conservation Advisory Board) every year is in February. That shows you how much respect we get. Many small game hunters have to wait every year till Deer season ends on the 31 of January to get into the woods. If you are religious and worship on Sundays, then to attend the centrally located meeting in Montgomery, you have to give up 1 of the 4 Saturdays that you have to hunt or 25% of your hunting time.
Every CAB meeting has deer hunters wanting the season extended into February which would be the final nail in small game hunting.
Personally, I wish that deer seasons ending would be rolled back to 15 January if not the 2.
Phenix City has a several mile border on the Chattahoochee River but has not one single public access point.
Forever Wild is a state project that I’ve read about but has no effect on the area I live and hunt in.
Nor is there any any public land beyond the Corp of Engineer land, ( 4. With the exception of waterfowl retrieval, hunting of any kind with dogs is prohibited on Corps managed property.. ),
Eufalua Wildlife Refuge, (Rabbit and squirrel hunting is allowed during the state season in February on designated Alabama portions of the refuge. Dogs are not permitted. Shotguns using non-toxic shot are required. Possession of lead shot is prohibited.),
Tuskegee National Forest (One of the smallest National Forests at 10,358 acres . It is hunted to death with only a few suitable areas for rabbit hunting.)