By Amy Patrick, OHA Outreach Coordinator
OHA delivered a letter to Governor Brown’s office on April 6 advocating for the continued access to our outdoor areas through hunting and fishing opportunities. While many locations have been closed, such as state parks, US Forest Service and BLM sites, and numerous beach and river access areas, Oregon’s hunting and fishing seasons have remained intact. However, the governor’s directive to stay home raised concerns regarding the certainty of our spring bear and turkey seasons.
As stated in the letter, going afield has great therapeutic benefit and can be easily accomplished with adherence to the social distancing guidelines contained in the governor’s directive. Emphasis was given to the ability to recreate either in family groups or in a solitary manner and the inherent desire for hunters to distance themselves while participating in this type of recreation.
The letter closed with a reminder of the importance of maintaining individual opportunities to enjoy Oregon’s outdoors and a request for strong consideration that these options continue to be allowed as the state deals with the COVID-19 issues.
The full letter can be read at www.oregonhunters.org/documents
Nonresidents told to stay home
In keeping with Governor Brown’s Executive Order that directs people to stay home, ODFW has prohibited nonresidents from participating in hunting, angling, and shellfishing within the state. Made effective on April 10, the ruling will stay in effect through Oct. 6, unless it is deemed appropriate to lift the ban earlier – a move that is dependent on the governor’s direction.
While recreating through hunting, fishing, and shellfishing may be restricted, sales of licenses and tags are not. Residents and nonresidents alike may continue to purchase licenses, tags, and permits via the electronic licensing system.
Comparatively, Washington has made no distinction between residents and nonresidents by postponing their spring bear and turkey seasons until at least May 4 and closing all recreational fishing and shellfishing.