Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Applications for reserved waterfowl hunts on managed waterfowl hunting areas are on sale now through Tuesday, Aug. 28, the Department of Natural Resources reminded hunters today.

Managed waterfowl areas are Michigan’s wetland wonders, and the DNR encourages hunters to explore them by applying for reserved morning and afternoon hunts during the opening weekend of the waterfowl hunting season at Fish Point, Harsens Island, Nayanquing Point and Shiawassee River State Game Area.

These reserved hunts offer waterfowl hunters the unique opportunity of a guaranteed hunting spot at some of the best ducking hunting areas in the state, on one of the first two days of the season.

To participate in the morning hunts and the second-day afternoon hunts, successful applicants must have appropriate licenses and stamps and may be accompanied by up to three additional appropriately licensed hunters. Youth hunters have a special opportunity, as the opening-day afternoon hunts are reserved for those 16 and under. Successful applicants for the opening-day afternoon hunts may have up to two adults who are 18 years of age or older with appropriate licenses, and must have at least one youth 16 years of age or younger with the appropriate license.

Youth hunters under the age of 10 must have a mentored youth license and must be accompanied by a qualified mentor who is at least 21 years old. The mentored youth license is a “package” license to hunt small game including waterfowl, turkey (spring and fall) and deer (two tags); trap furbearers and fish for all species. For complete rules and restrictions on the Mentored Youth Hunting Program, see www.michigan.gov/mentoredhunting.

Reserved goose hunts for the mornings of waterfowl hunting opening weekend are also available at the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge.

Waterfowl reserved hunt applications, which cost $4, are available at all license agents or online at www.michigan.gov/huntdrawings. Hunters may only apply once. Drawing results will be posted at www.michigan.gov/huntdrawings on Sept. 17.

Participate in the new Wetland Wonders Challenge this fall. Register and hunt at four managed waterfowl areas and you will be entered to win the ultimate prize package. Consolation drawings will also occur. In addition, special collector waterfowl bands will be available to those who hunt at each managed area. For more information and the terms and conditions of the challenge, please visit www.michigan.gov/wetlandwonders.

Hunters have an additional opportunity to participate in a reserved waterfowl hunt by applying for the 2013 Pure Michigan Hunt drawing. Each application is $4 and you may apply as many times as you like. Three lucky winners will receive a hunt package that includes an elk, bear, turkey, and antlerless deer license, and the reserved waterfowl hunt of their choice. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/puremichiganhunt.