Kentucky Fish and Wildlife opens over 1,400 acres for public hunting in western Kentucky
The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources announced it will create two new Wildlife Management Areas (WMA’s) in western Kentucky.
The two WMA’s – one located in Ferguson Creek in Livingston County and the other in Gabbard Branch in Butler County– combined will have over 1,400 acres. These areas will provide public hunting lands during statewide hunting seasons, and will also be subject to statewide regulations.
Mike Hardin, is the assistant director of the Fisheries Division of Kentucky Fish and Wildlife,. He said in a press release for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources the acquisition of the lands was funded through the Kentucky Wetland and Stream Mitigation Program.
“These properties will undergo stream and wetland restoration and enhancement as mitigation for impacts from development elsewhere in the Green River and Cumberland River drainages,” Hardin said.
Both areas provide sanctuary to endangered species of wildlife. The gray bat and the lesser siren inhabit Ferguson Creek. In Gabbard Branch, there are four endangered species of mussels, including the sheepnose mussel, inhabiting the area’s wetlands. Ferguson Creek also hosts several species of waterfowl including wood ducks and teal, which visit in September.
Wildlife officials plan to restore the streams and wetlands in these areas through a series of rehabilitation projects. Plans call for Gabbard Branch to receive nearly 20 new acres of wetlands with these projects.
The areas will be open to hunters for Kentucky’s youth-only turkey season April 1-2. The areas will also be open for the regular turkey season April 15-May 7. A new regulation dictates hunters can only harvest one turkey per WMA in the spring.
To learn more about the WMA’s visit the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources website.