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Hunting

Hunting is one of the priority recreational uses on National Wildlife Refuges and compatible with the mission of this refuge. Hunters help manage nilgai and feral hogs, exotic and invasive species that destroy habitat important to many other wildlife species. While enjoying this traditional, recreational activity, hunters help manage these lands for the benefit of wildlife and you.

Public Hunt Information 2013-2014 

The Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge conducts seasonal firearm, shotgun/muzzleloader and archery hunts for white-tailed deer, nilgai and feral hog. Youth-only hunts are also scheduled.

The refuge has approximately 6,000 acres open for big game hunting. Hunt seasons vary according to State regulations. The number of hunters desired for each hunt period may be increased or decreased to address significant changes in population levels.

To participate, hunters must have

  • A permit issued by the refuge
  • A valid hunting license
  • Proof of hunter's education certification
  • A picture identification on them while in the field
  • Permit applications must be filled out completely and accurately to be considered

General Information and Application Process

  • The hunt application periods for all hunts is during August 1-31, 2013 and are accepted during the hours of 8am-4pm by mail or hand-delivered to the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge. We will not accept postmarked applications.
  • Applications can be picked up at the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge at the address above or downloaded here.
  • Hunt applications will be available for pick up or download the last week of July 2013.
  • All illegible, incomplete, inaccurate, and ineligible applications are subject to being disqualified and returned.
  • Big game hunters that fail to return their harvest report survey will be placed on the following year’s ineligible list. The harvest report survey is due no later than 30 days following the end of your scheduled hunt. This report provides the refuge vital information on wildlife populations and is a tool used to determine increase or decrease in future hunting opportunity.
  • Hunt selections will be made through a computer random lottery drawing.
  • Successful applicants will be notified by mid September. 
  • The Fish and Wildlife Service is not responsible for applications, permits and harvest reports lost in the mail. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the information is legible and accurate.
  • Selected applicants must pay their permit fee by money order or cashier’s check only, (personal checks, credit cards or cash not accepted) no later than October 18, 2013 in order to hunt. Money orders and cashier’s checks should be made payable to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. 
  • You may submit only one application for each hunt category.
  • Selections, permits and hunt dates cannot be traded, exchanged or transferred for any reason.
  • The Fish and Wildlife Service reserves the right to set permit quotas based on big game population changes.

Download more details on the Hunt Regulations and Information.

 

Equal Opportunity Access -- Disabled hunters with mobility impairment are encouraged to contact our office for more information on access to the hunts. 


 



Refuge Big Game Hunt Information:

Archery Big Game Hunt - $75.00
General: Four consecutive days
Dates: Oct. 31-Nov. 3, Nov. 7-10, Nov. 28 - Dec. 1, Dec. 5-8, Dec 12-15, Jan 2-5
Bag Limit: Two White-tailed deer (one male deer and one female or two females), no limit on nilgai antelope and feral hogs.
Legal Weapons: Longbows, compound bows or recurved bows. Only a person with a permanent upper-limb disability will be issued a Special Use Permit from LRGV NWR to use a crossbow.

Shotgun or Muzzleloader Big Game Hunt – $75.00
General: Three consecutive days
Dates: Nov. 15-17, Nov. 22-24, Dec. 6-8, Dec 27-29, Jan. 10-12
Bag Limit: Two White-tailed deer (one male deer and one female or two females), no limit on nilgai antelope and feral hogs.
Legal Weapons: Shotgun (20 gauge or larger with slug shot only) or muzzleloader (.40 caliber or larger).

Exotic-Only Hunt - $75.00
General: Two consecutive days
Dates: Jan. 18-19 and Feb. 1-2
Bag Limit: No limit on nilgai antelope and feral hogs only.
Legal Weapons: Any legal center-fire firearm except hand held pistols (hand guns).

Youth Hunt  - $75.00
General: Two consecutive days. Open to youths ages 9-17 only. Must be accompanied by a Chaperone.
Dates: Nov. 9-10, Nov. 30-Dec.1, Dec. 14-15, and Jan. 4-5

Bag Limit: Two White-tailed deer (one male deer and one female or two females), no limit on nilgai antelope and feral hogs only.
Legal Weapons: Any legal center-fire firearm except hand held pistols (hand guns).
 

Hunt Maps 

East Lake
Teniente 

 


 
Helpful Hints
Please call 956-784-7500 for more information about hunting opportunities, including special accommodations.

*Hunter Report Required*
As specified in the permit, hunters are required to submit a harvest report at the end of the season. Failure to do so will disqualify hunters from future hunts on the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge. 

Filling Out the Application
  

  • Name of the refuge: Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge
  • Date of the Application: Enter the date you will submit the application
  • Self explanatory
  • Method - Enter as follows:
    • For archery hunt: select Archery
    • For shotgun/muzzleloader hunt:  select Shotgun or Muzzleloader
    • For Youth hunts: select Rifle
    • For Exotic hunt:  select Rifle 
    • Species: Leave blank 
     
  • Hunt date choices: Refer to the public hunt information sheet and select your hunt date choices for the hunt you are applying  
  • Hunt location choices: Leave blank
  • Special hunt – Enter as follows:
    • For Youth hunt: select youth hunt
    • For Exotic hunt: select Other and enter Exotic Hunt
    • No need to enter anything for Archery or shotgun/muzzleloader hunts 
Big Game Hunt Application
Last Updated: Jul 26, 2013
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