Created in 1988, Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge was established to preserve and protect wintering waterfowl and their habitat. It was the first refuge established under the auspices of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. Located at the convergence of two major flyways, the refuge has an important role in management for migratory birds. Consisting of fresh marsh, coastal prairie, and old rice fields, Cameron Prairie NWR is located at the convergence of two major flyways. The refuge has an important role in management for migratory birds including many species of ducks, geese, and other waterfowl and migratory birds.
INFORMATION BULLETIN

Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge 1428 Highway 27
Bell City, LA 70665
337-774-5923
https://www.fws.gov/refuge/cameron_prairie/

For Immediate Release                         Contact: Refuge Office 337-774-5932

Date: August 22, 2022                             Shane Baxter 337-403-9933

Application Period Open for Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge
Youth and Senior Lottery Waterfowl Hunts

The Southwest Louisiana National Wildlife Refuge Complex has two Lottery Drawn Waterfowl Hunt opportunities on Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge. The application period for both lottery waterfowl hunts is September 1-30, 2022.  All applications must be received at Cameron Prairie NWR by Thursday, September 30, 2022.  Cards may be mailed to Cameron Prairie Lottery Hunt, 209 Nature Rd, Lake Arthur, LA 70546 in advance to arrive by the deadline or dropped into the secure incoming mailbox, located in front of the Cameron Prairie office at the edge of the parking lot, until sunset. The Cameron Prairie Office/Visitor center is closed until further notice due to damages from Hurricane Laura, however, the mail is still delivered and picked up by staff.  See description of each hunt and how to apply below.

The Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge Youth Lottery Waterfowl Hunt is open to youth 10–17 years of age.  The youth hunts, in five blinds, are scheduled on Saturdays and selected school holidays within the Louisiana West Zone waterfowl hunting season. The 13 available hunt dates for the 2022-23 Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge Youth Lottery Waterfowl Hunt are November 5* (* Youth Waterfowl Day is a youth only hunt for youths 17 years old and under.  Adults must supervise youth, but adults cannot hunt on this day).  November 12,19,23, and 26 (2022), December 3, 17, 24, 28, and 31 (2022), and January 14, 21 and 28 (2023).  Selected youth, their adult supervisor, and a guest of any age are permitted to hunt on these dates in compliance with state law. Youth hunters must harvest their own limit. Decoys are NOT provided.

Youth hunter applicants must be 10-17 years of age by November 1, 2022. (For the Louisiana Youth Only Hunt on November 5, 2022, the youth and youth guest must be 17 or younger on that day to hunt).   One adult will supervise no more than two youth hunters. Youth hunters and supervisors born after September 1, 1969, are required to possess a Louisiana Hunter Safety Certification card or equivalent from another state prior to application.  If the course has been taken, but the card has not been received, youth hunters will be required to carry a copy of their course completion certificate while hunting. Three hunters (supervising adult, permitted youth, and a guest of any age) are permitted in each of the Cameron Prairie pit blinds.

The Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge Senior Lottery Waterfowl Hunt is open to seniors age 55 and older by November 1, 2022.  Senior hunts, in five blinds, are scheduled on Wednesdays during the Louisiana West Zone waterfowl hunting season. The six available dates for the 2022-23 Cameron Prairie NWR Senior Lottery Waterfowl Hunt are November 16 and 30 (2022), December 21 (2022) and January 11, 18, and 25 (2023).  Chosen senior hunters are permitted to bring two guests of any age. Decoys are NOT provided.

To apply for refuge Lottery Hunts:  Submit Only ONE white 3” x 5” index card for each hunt that you are applying for this year.  There are two different lottery waterfowl hunts, they are: 1) Cameron Prairie Youth Waterfowl Hunt and 2) Cameron Prairie Senior Waterfowl Hunt.  Application index cards should be sent, or hand delivered to: Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge, 1428 Highway 27, Bell City, LA 70630 and received no later than 3:00 pm, Thursday, September 30, 2022.  Cards may be dropped into secure incoming mailbox located in front of the office at the edge of the parking lot. The Cameron Prairie Office/Visitor center is closed until further notice due to hurricane damages from Hurricane Laura, however, the mail will be picked up.

Each card must contain the following information:

1) Print or Type Name of Hunt that you are applying for:
Cameron Prairie Youth Waterfowl Hunt or Cameron Prairie Senior Waterfowl Hunt (only one card per hunt, NOT one per hunt date)
2)  Print or Type Applicant name
3)  Print or Type Applicant age by November 1, 2021
4)  Print or Type Applicants complete mailing address
5)  Print or Type Applicants email address
6)  Print or Type Applicants complete contact telephone number
7)  Print or Type Applicants preferred Hunt Date and up to FOUR alternate dates, in priority order, or write “any available date” if you can make it to any hunt date.

Phone or email applications are not accepted.  If the required information is not provided, or is illegible, the applicant will not be eligible for the drawing. Individuals submitting more than one card per hunt will be disqualified from the drawing.

Successful applicants will receive a packet containing a special lottery hunt permit that will identify the hunt date and blind number of the hunt, a map to the hunt blind, and a SW LA NWR Complex hunt permit brochure.  Packets should arrive no later than November 3, 2022.

For additional information about any of the SW LA National Wildlife Refuges call 337-774-5923 or view our website at https://www.fws.gov/refuge/cameron-prairie

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov. Connect with our Facebook pages at www.facebook.com orhttps://www.facebook.com/SouthwestLouisianaComplex , follow our tweets at www.twitter.com/usfwssoutheast, watch our YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/usfws and download photos from our Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwssoutheast.

Visit Us

National wildlife refuges offer us all a chance to unplug from the stresses of daily life and reconnect with our natural surroundings. Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge was established to preserve and protect wintering waterfowl and their habitat. The refuge is located approximately 25 miles southeast of Lake Charles, Louisiana, in north central Cameron Parish. It contains 9,621 acres that include fresh marsh, coastal prairie, and old rice fields (currently moist soil units). Located at the convergence of two major flyways, the refuge has an important role in management for migratory birds. The visitor center, exhibits, and auto-tour route are the primary attractions for the visiting public. The refuge is an integral part of the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road. The East Cove Unit, which is only accessible by boat, was established in 1937 as part of Sabine National Wildlife Refuge. This unit, administratively transferred to Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge from Sabine in 2001, consists of 14,927 acres of brackish to intermediate marsh. These marshes are managed as a nursery for brown and white shrimp, blue crab, and many fish species. Located in Cameron Parish in the southwest corner of Louisiana, the East Cove Unit is bordered on the west by Calcasieu Lake, and on the north, east, and south by privately owned marshes.

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