U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Southeast Region News Release

October 10, 1995                             Diana M. Hawkins, or

                                        Carolyn Rogers (912) 986-5441


More than 50 wheelchair-bound sportsmen are expected to turn out October 13-14 for the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge's fifth annual deer hunt for disabled hunters. Last year 36 hunters took part in the event and bagged 18 deer. The event is designed to attract handicapped hunters from all over Georgia, who would not normally be able to engage in hunting activities on a refuge. Participation in the hunt is limited to those who require wheelchairs for mobility. Volunteers from the Georgia Wildlife Federation and members of the Georgia Handicapped Sportsmen Association are assisting refuge staff in staging the 2-day event.

Hunters are scheduled to arrive at the refuge campground, which serves as hunt headquarters, on Thursday, October 12. The hunt will officially begin at sunrise, Friday, October 13, and continue until sunset, Saturday.

Volunteers from the Georgia Wildlife Federation and other organizations will assist the refuge staff in positioning hunters in the woods and bringing the hunter-killed deer back to camp. Hunters are expected to use motorized wheelchairs, all-terrain-vehicles (ATVs) or pickups to move around the refuge during the 2-day hunt. Because the use of an ATV on a refuge is generally prohibited, hunters will be issued special-use permits to enable them to use these vehicles during the hunt.

The event coincides with the National Wildlife Refuge Week that is being celebrated October 8-14 at many of the more than 500 refuges scattered across the Nation. The organized activities are part of a national outreach campaign to spotlight the National Wildlife Refuge System as an example of how the Service works to conserve the Nation's fish and wildlife and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.

Hunters will gather Friday night for a cookout prepared by volunteers at the refuge campground. The Service's Southeast Regional Director Noreen Clough, and Georgia Wildlife Federation President Jerry McCollum will join the sportsmen and women at this year's principal social event for handicapped deer hunters in the State of Georgia.


Release #95-85

1995 News Releases

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