Conserving the Nature of America
Press Release
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation Team Up to Expand Hunting Opportunities

September 26, 2018

Contact(s):

Craig Springer, craig_springer@fws.gov or 505-248-6867
Beth Ullenberg, beth_ullenberg@fws.gov


Bull Elk at the Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge . W. Munsterman.

Bull Elk at the Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge . Credit: W. Munsterman.

Oklahoma – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation are teaming up once again to expand hunting opportunities in the great state of Oklahoma. The two agencies are long time partners with shared goals and a mutual vision of providing high quality hunting experiences for hunters of all ages and interests. During recent collaborative meetings, the agencies successfully worked together to seek out new hunting opportunities on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service managed national wildlife refuges within the state of Oklahoma.

“Our successful partnership with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conversation has allowed us to identify and expand hunting opportunities on our lands in the state that will benefit a variety of hunters” said the Service’s Southwest Regional Director Amy Lueders. “This expansion will also provide new economic opportunities for the local communities.”

During the upcoming hunting season, hunters will enjoy new opportunities on several national wildlife refuges.

“Through a great partnership with the USFWS, Oklahoma is the first state in our region to offer these expanded opportunities and we hope this is just the start of even greater hunting and fishing opportunities on National Wildlife Refuges," said J.D. Strong, Director of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. "We are eager to continue working with the USFWS to seek out more circumstances where our sportsmen and women can use these fantastic areas to carry on our hunting and fishing traditions."

Hunting has been improved at Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge near Lawton, which added an additional elk hunt and seventy cow tags. Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge near Vian has added acres to the refuge deer hunt area in addition to adding numerous small game species to various Refuge Hunt Units including Eastern gray and fox squirrel, Eastern Cottontail and swamp rabbit, and opossum. And the good news does not stop there! The deer archery season at Deep Fork National Wildlife Refuge near Okmulgee for 2018 has been extended to November 30th as well as an extension of the Youth Turkey Hunts from March 30 – 31. The general turkey season opens on April 8 and runs through May 6, 2019.

Hunters are encouraged to watch for future expansions at other national wildlife refuges around the state that will be implemented in the 2019-2020 hunt season.

State of Oklahoma Hunting Licenses are required for all new hunts and some national wildlife refuges may require Refuge Permits. Both agencies ask hunters to read new hunting information carefully and to contact national wildlife refuges directly to get the most current rules and regulations regarding the new changes. A current 2018 – 2019 Hunt Brochure is also available to the public.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service.

For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov. Connect with our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/usfws, follow our tweets at www.twitter.com/usfwshq, watch our YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/usfws and download photos from our Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwshq.


The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.

For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov/. Connect with our Facebook page, follow our tweets, watch our YouTube Channel and download photos from our Flickr page.