Despite unseasonably early snowfall and relentless rains, the fall pheasant stocking season continues through the Saturday following Thanksgiving.
On average, almost 40,000 pheasants are stocked statewide – with 13,000 being allocated to the Central District. Most locations stock at least once a week, while others stock two to three times a week. Hunters are allowed to hunt from sunrise to sunset, with the proper permits, on any Wildlife Management Area. Revenue from the sale of hunting licenses pay for the stocking of all 40,000 pheasants.
Please note: Access to several hunting locations was interrupted by damage caused by Tropical Storm Irene and the October snow storm – including Birch Hill, Bolton Flats, Barre Falls, Quaboag, Richardson, and Winimusset. With the exception of Quaboag, all locations have been reopened. Only one pheasant delivery from the vendor was delayed, and is planned to be made up later in the season.
This recreational activity has been enjoyed by residents of Massachusetts since 1906, when open fields dominated the state’s landscape. Each year thousands of hunters enjoy this recreational bird hunting throughout the state.
For safety, a high visibility orange cap is required for hunters on Wildlife Management Area land. Hunting hours on other properties vary, as do the regulations. The daily bag limit is two pheasants, and the season bag limit is six.
For more hunting information, visit the MassWildlife website.