Mad Island: Hunting


Phone: (979) 323-9579
Address:
2200 7th Street, 3rd Floor
Bay City, TX 77414

Contact: Lang Alford

Dates Open: Open on specific days during early teal season and South Zone waterfowl season. Open during drawn hunts for alligator, feral hog, and white-tailed deer. A reservation is needed for wildlife tours. Contact the Area Manager for specific dates.

Hunting

Hunting Permitted

Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) have rules and regulations for hunting not required on private property. Hunters must possess a valid hunting license, the appropriate tags and stamps, as well as the proper public hunting permit. Permits include: Annual Public Hunting Permit (APH), computer drawn Special Permits, and the Regular Permit, which allows daily small game hunting on some areas. Hunters 16 years of age and younger are not required to have a hunting permit, but must have a hunting license and be supervised by a licensed, permitted adult, 18 years of age or older. Hunters and non-hunters must wear hunter orange during daylight hours at any time when firearm hunting for any species is authorized on the unit (except turkeys, waterfowl, and dove). For more details see the rules page for this WMA, the Summary of Fishing and Hunting Regulations and Public Hunting Lands Information and Maps.

Waterfowl

Public hunting is permitted for waterfowl, sandhill crane, rail, gallinule, and snipe:

  • Hunters could walk up to 1/2 mile in wetland habitat to reach their hunting site.
  • No trailers or outboard motors allowed.
  • Early Teal: Only on Saturdays and Sundays within teal season.
  • Youth Only Waterfowl: Only the Saturday during the established Special Youth USFWS season.
  • South Zone Duck: Only on Saturdays and Sundays within general season.
  • Holidays: No hunts conducted on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or New Year's Day.
  • Shooting Hours: 30 minutes before sunrise, must be checked out and exit area by noon each day.
  • Hunters over the age of 16 are required to possess an Annual Public Hunt (APH) permit. Any users on the area but not hunting are required to possess a Limited Public Use (LPU) permit. When hunting on public lands, youth under 17 are required to be under the immediate supervision of a duly permitted, authorized supervising adult, age 18 or older, who is licensed to hunt in Texas.

Waterfowl Line-Up Procedure

NOTE: Hunts are no longer conducted on First Come/First Serve format. A lottery drawing will occur at 4:30 a.m. each day of a hunt to determine your position in line. Hunters arriving after 4:30 a.m. will be checked in as they arrive.

Hunters arriving before 4:30 a.m. the morning of the hunt will line up at the Mad Island gate at the end of CR 374 (Franzen Road). Staff will issue numbered tags down the line with the last tag being issued at 4:30 a.m. Check in begins at the Hunter check-station following tag issuance. Tags will be randomly drawn to determine order of check in. Hunters sign in with tag number, name and hunt location.

Typically the WMA offers over 50 hunting locations, in addition to 6 youth blinds; however the number of hunting locations are subject to change depending on water availability. Each hunt location is marked with a reflective sign to aid hunters in locating their hunt site. Hunters must hunt within 30 yards of their marker. Walking distances range from 200 yards to 0.5 miles. Limited hunting locations may be accessed by small boats/canoes which must be hand launched and hand or electrically propelled.

Use of retriever dogs and decoys is recommended. Use of dogs prior to November is discouraged because of increased alligator activity. No permanent blinds may be constructed. The following equipment is considered a necessity for hunters: hip boots or waders, flashlight, rain gear, and insect repellent. Call for further hunting information about the area (979) 323-9579 or (979) 236-4765.

Deer

Mad Island WMA offers youth only white-tailed deer hunts which are special permit hunts administered through the Texas Drawn Hunt system. Dates and hunt type are subject to change, please reference the Texas Drawn Hunt system for information.

Hunters are required to arrive at the WMA around 10:00AM the first morning of the hunt. During check in hunters must show their hunter orange for all parties, hunting licenses, and hunting education certificates (No APH is required during special permit hunts). Standby hunters must fill out a stand by application upon arrival and the standby hunters are selected through a drawing at 11:00 AM. All participants must attend a hunter orientation which explains the rules, safety requirements, and legal deer identification. Only scoped rifles may be used and rifle calibers larger than .223 are recommended.

All deer stands are box blinds either on the ground or raised to 36 inches. All stand locations are baited the week preceding by WMA staff. A cleaning station is available with ropes, gambrels, lights, and running water. The following equipment is considered a necessity for hunters: hunter orange vest and hat, flashlight, rain gear, and insect repellent. Call for further hunting information about the area 979-323-9579 or 979-236-4765.

ATVs and ORVs are allowed and recommended.

Feral Hog

Special permit Feral Hog hunts are available through the Texas Drawn Hunt system. Dates and hunt type are subject to change, please reference the Texas Drawn Hunt system for information.

Hunters are required to arrive at the WMA around 10:00AM the first morning of the hunt. During check in hunters must show their hunter orange for all parties, hunting licenses, and hunting education certificates (No APH is required during special permit hunts). Standby hunters must fill out a stand by application upon arrival and the standby hunters are selected through a drawing at 11:00 AM.

All participants must attend a hunter orientation which explains the rules, safety requirements, and legal game identification. After the orientation, hunters are allowed to select their hunting blind and may then go hunting. Only scoped rifles may be used.

The WMA offers box blinds for hog hunters to utilize and all stands are baited the week preceding by WMA staff. A cleaning station is available with ropes, gambrels, lights, and running water. The following equipment is considered a necessity for hunters: hunter orange vest and hat, flashlight, rain gear, and insect repellent. Call for further hunting information about the area 979-323-9579 or 979-236-4765.

ATVs and ORVs are allowed and recommended.

Alligator

Special permit alligator hunts are available through the Texas Drawn Hunt system. Dates and hunt type are subject to change, please reference the Texas Drawn Hunt system for information.

Hunters are required to arrive at the WMA around 10:00AM the first morning of the hunt. During check in hunters must show their hunting licenses, and hunting education certificates (No APH is required during special permit hunts). Standby hunters must fill out a stand by application upon arrival and the standby hunters are selected through a drawing at 11:00 AM.

All participants must attend a hunter orientation which explains the rules, safety requirements, and legal game identification. After the orientation, hunters are allowed to select their hunting area and may then go hunting. Shotguns with non-toxic shot are the only firearms and ammunition allowed.

The WMA supplies alligator hunters with an anchor pole (t-post), Calcutta pole for hanging bait and alligator tag. The following equipment is considered a necessity for hunters: hip boots or waders, flashlight, rain gear, and insect repellent. Call for further hunting information about the area 979-323-9579 or 979-236-4765.

Small boats, suitable for hand launch and operated by electric motors are encouraged. No trailers or outboard motors allowed.