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Think back to when you were a kid and starting to hunt. Your mom, dad, grandpa, uncle or whoever knew all the spots, and had access to all the lands. Over the years you’ve noticed access to a lot of places has been restricted. I’m not talking private lands, more along the lines of state parks, wildlife refuges and the like.  The federal government’s closure of these lands limited our access to public lands greatly and probably lead to some hunters letting family traditions go and unfilled tags. How many potential hunters have we lost out on because the lands they thought they could hunt were all closed off? Access to hunting lands is a big deal!

Outdoorsmen and women rejoice! The Trump administration has announced plans to open up 1.4 million acres of federal public lands to hunting and fishing. The proposal would allow hunting in 74 national wildlife refuges, and grant access to hunt and fish in 15 national fish hatcheries for the first time ever. Also included in the plan reviewing and revising regulations of refuge to match state regulations where the 2 coincide. In some refuges, such as Green Bay National Refuge and Seedskadee National Refuge, deer and elk hunting would be allowed for the first time. The administration hopes the plan will be finalized by September after a public comment period.

With any luck, this plan passes and we can all enjoy more of our lands. Let us hope this doesn’t become another political chess piece. Updates will be provided as they come up! What are your thoughts on the proposed plan?

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