Mule Deer, Squirrel Seasons Top Suite of Proposed Hunting Regulation Changes

Steve Lightfoot, 512-389-4701,

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AUSTIN – The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is proposing expansion of mule deer hunting in several counties and extending squirrel season into February across parts of East Texas.

TPWD staff presented proposed amendments to the 2014-15 Statewide Hunting Proclamation to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission. The recommended changes include:

  • Implement an archery-only open season and 16-day general season for mule deer in Knox County, where the season is currently closed;
  • Implement a nine-day general season for mule deer in Castro, Hale, Lubbock, and Lynn counties, where the season is currently closed;
  • Clarify rules regarding utilization of antlerless mule deer permits;
  • Shorten the current year-round open season for desert bighorn sheep by one month and eliminate the requirement of a landowner affidavit for skulls and horns found in the wild;
  • Extend squirrel season in 51 East Texas counties;
  • Eliminate bag and possession limits for squirrel in 12 counties in the Blacklands Prairie;
  • Allow the take of squirrel by means of air rifles meeting minimum standards;
  • Implement rules allowing use of mobile technology by hunters to check harvested Eastern turkeys;
  • Clarify rules governing possession of firearms while hunting deer or turkey during an open archery season;

Proposed changes can be found in the Feb. 21 edition of the Texas Register and on the TPWD website.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted by phone or e-mail to Robert Macdonald (512) 389-4775; e-mail:, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744. Comments may also be submitted through the department’s Internet web site after February 21 and at the following upcoming public meetings scheduled around the state.

TPWD Public Hearing Schedule

All meetings set for 7 p.m.
Alpine March 10 Sul Ross, Range Animal Science Bldg, Rm 103, East Hwy 90
Sulphur Springs March 10 Hopkins Co. Courthouse, 118 Church St.
New Braunfels March 10 WORD Offices, 1928 FM 2673, Canyon Lake
Port Arthur March 11 Holiday Inn, Neches Room, 2929 Jimmy Johnson Blvd.
Dickinson March 11 Doyle Convention Center, Williams Goyens Room, 2010 5th Ave North, Texas City
Van Horn March 12 El Capitan Hotel Conference Room, 100 East Broadway
Marshall March 12 Marshall Lions Community Center, 1201 Louisiana St.
Zapata March 12 Zapata County Technical and Advance Education Center, Rm 128, 605 N. US Hwy 83
Port Lavaca March 12 Bauer Exhibit Building, 186 CR 101
San Antonio March 13 Bass Pro@ 17907 IH-10 West
Rockport March 13 Aransas County Courthouse, 301 N. Live Oak
Lubbock March 17 Texas Agrilife Research and Extension Center, 1102 E. FM1294
Nacogdoches March 17 Nacogdoches County Courthouse Annex, 203 West Main
Dallas-Fort Worth March 17 Cabela's, 1 Cabelas Dr., Allen
Palestine March 17 Ben E. Keith Building, 2019 W. Oak Street
Huntsville March 19 Walker County Storm Shelter, 455 Highway 75 N
Port Isabel March 19 Port Isabel Community Center, 213 Yturria
Amarillo March 19 Texas AgriLife Extension Center, 6500 Amarillo Blvd West
Corpus Christi March 20 Del Mar College Center for Economic Development, 3209 S. Staples St., Rm 106
Center March 20 Fannie Brown Booth Library, Redditt Room, 619 Tenaha Street
Houston March 20 Sheldon Lake State Park, 15315 Beaumont Hwy
Austin March 20 Austin TPWD HQ Commission Hearing Room, 4200 Smith School Road