The Big Thicket National Preserve is expanding opportunities for hunters with a new waterfowl area and permitting the use of air rifles for squirrel hunting.
Effective October 2017, the new Preserve Lake Bayou Hunting Unit, located on the Neches River north of the I-10 bridge in Beaumont, will be open for waterfowl-only hunting. The Lake Bayou Hunting Unit is nearly 4,000 acres of high-quality waterfowl hunting area accessible only by boat.
Hunters at Lake Bayou will be permitted to take waterfowl in accordance with State of Texas regulations from Oct. 1, 2017 to Feb. 28, 2018. Daily hunting hours for the unit will begin 30 minutes before sunrise and end at noon, with specific season and daily bag limits following Texas State regulations. As in all preserve hunting units, permanent blinds are not allowed, but boat blinds will be permissible and must be attended at all times.
“We’re excited to open this new hunting area and to offer waterfowl enthusiasts a new hunting opportunity in the region.” Preserve Superintendent Wayne Prokopetz said.
Once again, the Lake Bayou Hinting Unit is permitted for waterfowl only….there is no extended hog season in this unit. Hunters are allowed a single permit per season, free of charge starting Sept. 1, 2017 through Feb. 28, 2018, from 9 am to 5 pm daily at the Big Thicket National Preserve Visitor Center, 6102 FM420, Kountze.
Hunters at Big Thicket National Preserve are highly encouraged to review the Big Thicket Hunting Guide and Regulations booklet, which is updated annually. Additional information including maps of the preserves hunting areas can be found on the preserves’ website at https://www.nps.gov/bith/planyourvisit/hunting-and-trapping.htm.
Squirrel hunting is a popular activity in the preserve. It is open to hunters in accordance with State of Texas regulations, only squirrel: fox squirrel or cat/grey squirrel may be taken with air rifles.
For more information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit www.nps.gov/bith or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700.