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News Articles

02
Grant secures public access to private land

July 30, 2005

PENDLETON -- A $13,664 grant from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife Access and Habitat Program will ensure continued public hunting access for pheasant and other upland birds on 12,500 acres of private property southwest of Pendleton.

Money for the grant program comes from a $2 surcharge on hunting licenses.

The fee goes toward grants to individual and corporate landowners, conservation organizations and others for cooperative wildlife habitat improvement and hunting access projects throughout the state.

The rolling grasslands of the Pendleton area boasts some of the best pheasant populations in Oregon, but because most of the area is privately owned, public hunting access is difficult.

To make more upland bird hunting available to the public, Fish and Wildlife officials created the Coombs Canyon Regulated Hunt Area in 1999.

It is a cooperative agreement with rancher Steve Wolfe, who allows open-bird hunting access to his 12,500-property in return for an annual per-acre payment.

The access agreement covers the period from Oct. 1 through March 31, 2006.

Fish and Wildlife staff and Oregon State Police troopers patrol the area during hunting seasons.

In addition, Fish and Wildlife employees and local sports groups work with the landowner on wildlife habitat improvement projects on the property

The regulated hunt area has populations of ring-necked pheasant in Coombs Canyon and Hungarian partridge in the upland grassland areas.

A youth buck mule deer hunt and limited antlerless deer hunt also are available.

-- Statesman Journal

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