“Our added winter moisture and active calling period led to a very long nesting and hatching season, starting in late April and extending into early summer, with chicks hatching as late as early July,” O’Dell said. “From a population standpoint, we are out of a deficit for the first time since 2001-2002. Quail are starting to pop up in places they haven’t been seen in a while. 

“If you’ve never had the chance to experience what Arizona quail hunting built its name on, then this would be the year to get out and enjoy it.”      

Meanwhile, hunters should note that the season for Mearns’ quail doesn’t begin until Dec. 4. It’s summer rainfall that plays a key role in nesting success and population numbers of this species. After a spotty and relatively weak monsoon across southern Arizona, these birds are likely to be abundant only in pockets that received sufficient precipitation this summer.       

A valid Arizona hunting or combination hunt and fish license is required for all hunters 10 and older. Those hunters under 10 must either have a valid hunting or combination hunt and fish license, or be accompanied by an adult who possesses a valid hunting or combination hunt and fish license. Licenses can be purchased online or at license dealers statewide. A youth combination hunt and fish license (ages 10 to 17) is $5.

The general bag limit is 15 quail per day in the aggregate, of which no more than eight may be Mearns’ quail (when the Mearns’ season opens Dec. 4). The general possession limit is 45 quail in the aggregate after opening day, of which no more than 15 Gambel’s, scaled or California quail in the aggregate may be taken in any one day. After the opening of the Mearns’ season, the 45-quail possession limit may include 24 Mearns’ quail, of which no more than eight may be taken in any one day.

More quail-hunting information can be found on the department’s website at https://www.azgfd.com/Hunting/. Another resource for both new and experienced hunters alike is “An Introduction to Hunting Arizona’s Small Game.” Written by Randall D. Babb, the 196-page, full-color book covers where and how to hunt small game birds (like quail), squirrels, rabbits, ducks and geese. It also includes how to prepare and cook your harvest, with illustrations and recipes. The book can be ordered for $16.95 at www.azgfd.gov/publications.

Finally, hunters should check out O’Dell’s techniques for field-dressing quail at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3gRwZAcWzzk.   


Publishers Notes: OUT OF STATE HUNTERS, FISHERMEN & OUTDOOR ENTHUSIASTS; Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, there could be limitations for OUT of STATE hunters, fishermen and other outdoor enthusiasts to include a 14-day quarantine requirement or negative COVID-19 testing alternative. Please check with the State's Department of Natural Resources BEFORE you travel or apply for the 2020 Fall Hunts.

Disclaimer:  The views expressed on this site are that of the authors and not necessarily that of TBC Press
North America Sportshows
Minnesota Offering 2021 December CWD  Deer Hunts 

Submitted by:  TBC Press
Posted on: 12/03/21
The Backcountry Press
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News # 14656
Minnesota deer hunters seeking additional opportunities can harvest deer in late season chronic wasting disease management hunts in the southeast, south metropolitan area and along the Minnesota-North Dakota border.

Hunting dates are Friday, Dec. 17, through Sunday, Dec. 19, and Friday, Dec. 31, through Sunday, Jan. 2. Deer permit areas open to these CWD management hunts are 261, 262, 343, 605, 643, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649 and 655. Hunters may participate in both hunts.

A hunter may use any unfilled archery, firearms, muzzleloader or landowner deer hunting license. Unfilled bonus permits and early antlerless permits also may be used. The hunting method used must match the hunter’s deer license. Hunters who have filled their license may purchase disease management permits for $2.50 to participate.

There are no restrictions on the number of deer – antlerless or antlered – that a hunter may take. Unlike other hunts, disease management permits may be used to tag both antlered and antlerless deer. Bonus permits and early antlerless tags can only be used to tag antlerless deer.

CWD sampling is mandatory for both hunts. Harvested deer must be taken to a staffed or self-service station. Staffed sampling stations will be open 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during the hunts. Stations also will be open from 9 a.m. - noon on the Monday following each hunt. A complete list of station locations and hours is available on the DNR website.

Carcass movement restrictions apply during these hunts in all areas except the northwest hunts along the Minnesota-North Dakota border in permit areas 261 and 262. Hunters there are encouraged to not move whole carcasses from either area. Complete details on carcass movement restrictions and how to comply is available on the DNR website.

Hunters must obtain permission to hunt on private land but may hunt wildlife management areas and other public lands that are normally open to deer hunting within the designated deer permit areas.

Some public lands where deer hunting is not normally allowed will also be open to hunting during the CWD management hunts. Permits to hunt are required in some of these areas to limit the number of hunters. These permits will be available from any DNR license vendor on a first-come, first-served basis starting at noon on Friday, Dec. 3.

Permits are available for both weekends but are only valid for the weekend specified. Hunters may only obtain one permit, so they must choose which weekend they want to participate. The additional public lands open to hunting are:

  • Rushford Sand Barrens Scientific and Natural Area; no permit required
  • Savage Fen SNA; no permit required; archery only
  • Cannon River Turtle Preserve SNA; no permit required; only portions in permit area 605 are open
  • Forestville Mystery Cave State Park; permit required
  • Pine Oak Prairie SNA; permit required
  • Great River Bluffs State Park and King's and Queen's Bluffs SNA; permit required
  • Beaver Creek Valley State Park; permit required
  • Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area; no permit required; archery only in the Carver Rapids unit
  • Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge; archery only; no permit required; special regulations must be followed

Vermillion Highlands WMA is closed to public hunting during both late-season hunts.

Complete information about the hunts, which the DNR conducts to help assess potential disease spread and reduce the number of deer to help mitigate the risk of CWD transmission, is available on the DNR website .