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News from California Waterfowl

06/28/14 -- State Legislation Update -- Several bills and budget items of concern to California duck hunters and other waterfowl conservationists were recently considered by the State Legislature, including: AB 1709 (Frazier) -- CWA sponsored bill that would increase the junior hunting license age eligibility from up to 16 to up to 18 years of age for a 5-year trial period. AB 1709 passed the Senate Natural Resources and Water Committee 9-0, and will next be heard in the Senate Appropriations Committee. Others:
  • SB 1434 (Wolk) - CWA sponsored bill to increase the accountability and transparency over the state's use of Pittman-Robertson Act tax monies that are currently imposed on the sale of firearms, ammunition and archery equipment. Those monies fund the operations and maintenance of state wildlife areas, as well as hunter education. SB 1434 would also permanently establish the Duck Stamp Advisory Committee in state law. The bill recently passed the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee and will next be heard in the Assembly A,
  • SB 53 (De Leon) - Legislation which would mandate that purchasers of ammunition register with the state and pay a fee. SB 53 would also effectively ban the Internet and mail order sale of ammunition. This bill is strongly opposed by CWA and other sporting interests. It is currently located on the Assembly Floor.
  • Water Bonds - CWA and its Central Valley Joint Venture (CVJV) partners continue to advocate for wetlands funding in the various water bond proposals being considered by the State Legislature. Senator Lois Wolk (D-Davis) has included significant funding ($100 M) for Central Valley wetlands, as well as funding for private land waterfowl habitat programs, the establishment of Sites Reservoir in Colusa County and the implementation of the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement, in SB 848. The bill requires a two-thirds approval and is currently on the Senate Floor. SB 848 is currently a $10.5 billion measure, while Governor Brown has recently called for a considerably smaller water bond proposal at $6 billion.
  • Wildlife Area Drought Relief - $5 Million in additional funding for state wildlife areas was recently approved in the State Budget signed by Governor Brown. CWA and its CVJV partners advocated strongly for this additional funding to help lessen the effects of the ongoing drought on waterfowl and other wetland-dependent wildlife.

CWA 2014 State Convention
Special Rates End Soon! Time is running out! Get your tickets to the CWA 2014 State Convention today! This two-day event has something for everyone, including:

  • Hosted Bar, Reception at CWA HQ
  • Larry the Cable Guy at Thunder Valley
  • CWA Pacific Flyway Duck & Goose Calling Contest
  • Hunter Expo
  • Public Policy Q & A on Water & Impacts of Ongoing Drought
  • CWA National Call Makers Competition
  • ... And more!

We have weekend packages and special rates available for hotel rooms. To receive special discounts, YOU MUST register by July 3rd. For rooms at Thunder Valley, go to and enter promo code 140724CAWA.

For a Golden Pintail Package (two Tickets to Friday Night Reception, two floor Seats to Larry The Cable Guy, two Tickets to Saturday Night State Banquet & two Nights Hotel Stay at Thunder Valley) you must book by Thursday, July 3 at 12pm by going to or calling (916-648-1406 ext. 111.

Summer Banding Starting Soon
Every July, CWA biologists and seasonal field techs gear up in preparation for summer banding. Our goal is to trap and band locally produced waterfowl, focusing on mallards. Data collected from summer banding is important for updating Adaptive Harvest Management strategies, in particular the Western Mallard Model. However, this year will be tough with the 2014 California Breeding Population Survey revealing the lowest estimation of California mallards (238,666) since the survey's inception in 1991. With low numbers of breeding pairs we anticipate a low production year. Additionally, the ongoing drought will reduce the number of suitable trapping sites in traditional nesting regions. CWA will be running two crews throughout the remainder of the summer in the Suisun Marsh and the Delta. Crews will be wrapping up banding efforts at the end of August when out of state migrants begin to arrive; stay tuned for updates on our progress!

Register Now for Youth Summer Camps
CWA's Hunting Heritage program will be hosting 5-day youth summer camps in July. If you are looking for an exciting summer camp experience for your child this summer, sign up today for one of these exciting camps. The beginning hunter camps (Level 1) include DFW Hunter Education certification; all camps include safe, fun, hands-on outdoor activities that will get these new hunters started as lifelong hunter conservationists. Check out Level 1 Youth Hunter camps (July 13-17 and July 20-24) and Level 2 Youth Hunter camp (July 27-31). All camps include food, overnight lodging, ammunition and lots of outdoor fun at CWA's Grizzly Ranch Conservation Education Center on Grizzly Island.

Go to more information and to register online.

More Hunting News

Conservation Key to Future of Hunting

11/14/16 -- At its core, conservation seeks sustainability of wildlife and wild places. Ethical hunters want wild animals to flourish in their natural habitat as much as possible, and will act on their behalf in order to protect and conserve... Full Story

​I Was an Indoor (Outdoor) Slave

Don Webster, author badge,
04/07/16 -- I wish to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to all those kind folks who sent me "get well" cards and flowers during my recent, self-imposed stay at the Broken Antlers Rehabilitation Clinic. I'm especially indebted... Full Story

Nash Buckingham

Don Webster, author badge,
Theophilus Nash Buckingham (1880-1971) was an American author and conservationist from Tennessee. He is known for being an avid shotgunner and wingshot, and a best-loved outdoor writer of his time... Full Story

How much venison do hunters harvest?

Venison Bourguignon (Venison Stew), photo by Daniel Bledsoe,
06/17/15 -- The Dallas Safari Club (DSC) intends to find out. A study launching in 2015 will measure the actual amounts of venison and other wild protein harvested annually in North America. Researchers will assess the nutritional... Full Story

Pups & Partridges on the Calapooia Prairie

Liesl, 11 month old pudelpointer, photo by Gary Lewis
By Gary Lewis
02/18/15 -- They say a great pointing dog only comes along once or twice in a hunter's lifetime. Some dogs don't have the heart or the desire. Others don't seem to have the nose or the brain. We brought home our pudelpointer in... Full Story

DSC convention goers raise $1M in 1 minute

01/19/15 -- Responding to a heartfelt appeal for youth outdoor education, DSC convention goers on Saturday night raised $1 million in about 60 seconds. The fast flurry of fundraising was a highlight of the 2015 DSC convention and expo... Full Story

It’s Not over Till the Lady Sings

mountain lion on rocky edge, photo courtesy of UDWR and Carrie Wilson, CA DFW
By Gary Lewis
01/19/15 -- If you want to avoid being attacked by a mountain lion, conventional wisdom says, you should travel in groups. If you encounter a mountain lion by yourself or with children, stop and make yourself look as big as possible... Full Story

The buck we didn’t get and two we did

Tyler Low with his 3x4 buck shot at 100 yards with a Weatherby Vanguard .300 Winchester Magnum. Photo by Kyler Olson
By Tyler Low
08/10/14 -- “Can you see him? He is just below the sky line to the left of the big live oak.” The respectable three-point stood only 500 yards away, but my hunting partner, Kyler Olson, couldn’t quite get an eye on him... Full Story

Where Are All the Pheasants?

Sacramento Valley Pheasant, Steven T. Callan, Where Have All the Pheasants Gone
On Patrol by Steven T. Callan
The other day a neighbor stopped by my house after two days of hunting pheasants in the Orland area. He said that he and his golden retriever, Milo, had probably walked ten miles and only flushed three birds. Knowingthat I had grown up... Full Story

Ham on the Hoof

Article and photos by Gary Lewis
12/17/13 -- We were climbing a steep gravel ranch road in Charlie’s Toyota when we saw it, as big as a full-grown bear and on a dead run. Charlie hit the brakes and switched off the engine. There was no time to load the rifle. The shaggy, gray... Full Story

Never say never

Never say never, rifle buk, Francisco Garcia,
By Francisco Garcia
Most of you have heard the saying, patience is a virtue, and I would say persistence is a virtue. If you want to fill your deer tag each season you have to put your time in. If you don’t give in and hunt hard you should be... Full Story

Hunting trip gone bad

Deer holding tight in cover during times of heavy hunting pressure as I was about to find out. Francisco Garcia hunting story.
By Francisco Garcia
If you asked me what I’d rather be doing, most of the time I would emphatically say, deer hunting. For me nothing gets the juices flowing and the imagination spinning like the arrival of bow or rifle season for deer. When... Full Story


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