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SOA Hunt Registration Begins September 1

Dove hunting photo by Billy Pope, ADCNR

Registration for most hunts on Alabama’s Special Opportunity Areas (SOAs) opens at 8 a.m. on Thursday, September 1, 2022. The SOA program is offered through the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) Division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) in an effort to provide hunters with unique hunting opportunities.

SOAs are smaller than traditional Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) in acreage and are more suitable to a limited-quota hunting format, which reduces hunting pressure on game species and increases the quality of the hunting experience. The program offers a limited number of slots for successful permit holders and their guest(s) to hunt a dedicated 300- to 400-acre location for a two to four-day hunt.

“The Special Opportunity Area format provides our traditional public land hunters with new and exciting hunting options,” said Chuck Sykes, WFF Director. “It also provides hunters who have always been a bit hesitant about hunting on public land with a great opportunity to test the waters.”

SOA Hunts and Registration Times for the 2022-2023 Season

  • Adult dove hunts at Prairie Glades and Portland Landing SOAs – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on September 1 and closes at 5 p.m. on September 4 (for the September 10 hunts at Prairie Glades and Portland Landing) and 1 p.m. on September 14 (for the remaining hunts at Prairie Glades).
  • Deer hunts at Cedar Creek, Portland Landing, Uchee Creek, Thigpen Hill, Blackwater River, Fred T. Stimpson, Upper State, Crow Creek and Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge SOAs – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on September 1 and closes at 1 p.m. on September 12.
  • Deer hunts at Oak Mountain State Park SOA – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on September 1 and closes at 1 p.m. on September 12.
  • Youth and adult dog deer hunts at Geneva State Forest – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on September 1 and closes at 1 p.m. on September 12.
  • Youth squirrel hunts at Fred T. Stimpson SOA and the adult waterfowl hunts at Crow Creek SOA – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on September 20 and closes at 1 p.m. on October 4.
  • Small game and/or turkey hunts at Cedar Creek, Portland Landing, Uchee Creek, Fred T. Stimpson, Upper State, Thigpen Hill and Blackwater River SOAs – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on December 1 and closes at 1 p.m. on December 13.
  • Feral pig hunts at Portland Landing and Thigpen Hill SOAs – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on December 1 and closes at 1 p.m. on December 13.
  • Youth waterfowl hunts at Crow Creek SOA – Registration opens at 8 a.m. on January 1, 2023, and closes at 1 p.m. on January 10.

Limited-quota permits to hunt the SOAs are obtained through an online registration and selection process. Applicants apply online for a preferred SOA property hunt date. The cost to hunt a SOA is the purchase of both a state hunting license and a WMA license. Hunters will also need a Conservation ID Number, which is free. There is a $10 registration fee for each adult dove hunt date at the Prairie Glades and Portland Landing SOAs.

To register for one of the SOA hunts, visit www.outdooralabama.com/hunting/special-opportunity-areas during the dates and times listed above.

ADCNR promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through four divisions: Marine Resources, State Parks, State Lands, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. Learn more at www.outdooralabama.com.

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