FRANKFORT — The window to apply online for Kentucky’s annual drawings for deer, waterfowl and pheasant quota hunts on public lands is open through the end of September.
“Quota” refers to a set number of hunting slots or permits available for a particular hunt. These hunts are ideal for those just starting out, or others without a place to hunt.
September is also the month to apply for sandhill crane permits. Hunters may be drawn for up to three sandhill crane permits, which can be used statewide on public or private lands.
Ben Robinson, acting Wildlife Division director for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, noted there are nearly 100 wildlife management areas (WMAs) across the state that offer a variety of hunting opportunities for the public.
“For some WMAs, people only need the proper license, permit and hunter education certification to go hunting when it’s most convenient for them,” he said. “On the other hand, some hunters prefer the quota hunt system, where there are assigned hunting dates, but in return there is less hunting pressure because hunter numbers are limited.”
The cost to apply for each quota hunt is $3. Hunters may apply for multiple quota hunts for different game species. Sandhill crane hunters must pass a bird identification test before receiving their permit.
A complete list of all hunts, dates and special regulations is available in the “Quota Hunts” section of the 2022-23 Kentucky Hunting and Trapping Guide. This regulations summary is available wherever licenses are sold, or online at fw.ky.gov.
Deer quota hunts are held on 16 WMAs, five state parks (Dale Hollow Lake, Greenbo Lake, Green River Lake, Kenlake, Kincaid Lake) and Otter Creek Outdoor Recreation Area. Pheasant quota hunts are held on Yellowbank WMA, Green River Lake WMA and Clay WMA and waterfowl quota hunts are held on several WMAs.
Hunters can learn more by using the department’s online public lands searchfor maps, directions, locations, parking areas and more. Access this by going online to fw.ky.gov then searching under the keywords, “public lands.”
Hunters can also utilize online mapping systems to select their hunting spots through an ArcGIS database of Kentucky’s public lands.