Small game hunting to open Sat.Published 9:27am Thursday, September 13, 2012
Small game hunting opens on Saturday when it will be legal to take ruffed grouse, rabbits and squirrels.
“Small game season is a forgotten pleasure,” said Mike Kurre, DNR mentoring program coordinator. “With nothing more than a small caliber rifle or shotgun, a bit of patience and some blaze orange, Minnesota’s fields and forests are there to be explored and enjoyed.”
Small game hunting is inexpensive. Youth licenses age 15 and younger are free, and those for 16- and 17-year-olds are $12.50, a discount from the standard license price of $19.
Hunters must meet firearms safety requirements or obtain an apprentice hunter validation and go afield with a licensed hunter. Minnesota’s apprentice hunter validation program enables those who need but have not completed firearms safety training to hunt under prescribed conditions designed to ensure a safe hunt.
Minnesota offers public hunting on more than 1.4 million acres of wildlife management areas, 15,000 acres of Walk-In Access lands in southern Minnesota, and millions of acres of state forests. Grouse hunters have access to 528 designated hunting areas in the ruffed grouse range covering nearly 1 million acres, 43 designated ruffed grouse management areas and 600 miles of hunter walking trails.
In northwestern Minnesota, the sandhill crane season also begins Sept. 15. Waterfowl season opens statewide on Saturday as does the season on woodcock, a woodland migratory bird. Pheasant season opens Saturday, Oct. 13. Complete information about Minnesota hunting seasons is available online at www.mndnr.gov/hunting.