Report a Poacher or Other Violation

For more information on
hunting, please contact the
WDFW Wildlife Program.
Phone: 360-902-2515
wildthing@dfw.wa.gov

 

 

There are many Quality Waterfowl Hunting Opportunities found throughout the Columbia Basin, but many of the best agricultural fields have become increasingly difficult for hunters to access.  In order to increase opportunities to the public, WDFW has been working throughout the Columbia Basin Irrigation Project to secure public hunting access in corn stubble fields.  Aside from public hunting access, these fields provide a valuable food resource for wintering waterfowl.  All of which is possible through your purchase of the Washington State Duck Stamp!

Example of Register to Hunt registration card.All of the Corn Stubble Access sites can be accessed using the WDFW Hunt by Reservation system.  To ensure quality hunting opportunities, one group of up to four people will be allowed to access the individual sites at any time.  All individuals accessing the sites must be entered into the system and listed on the reservation permit before accessing a property.  Users are required to make an online reservation to access the site prior to the start of legal shooting hours, after the start of legal shooting hours if no other hunters are parked in the designated parking area then the site is considered open on a first come first served basis.  All hunters that use these corn stubble access sites are required to fill out the onsite hunting registration slips. The information collected from these slips provides valuable information regarding hunter satisfaction, harvest, and field productivity.  To the left is an example of a properly filled out Registration Slip.

General Rules and Guidelines

  • Hunters are required to park in the designated parking area, failure to do so will forfeit your hunting reservation.
  • After the start of legal shooting hours, if there is no vehicle in the designated parking area then the site is open to 'Register to Hunt' on a first come first served basis. All hunters must register at each site even if they have a reservation.
  • If you made a reservation and you failed to be at the site before the start of legal shooting hours then your reservation is forfeited, NO EXCEPTIONS.
  • Hunters that have made a reservation lose their guaranteed spot once they leave the designated parking location.  (Hunters that prefer afternoon or evening hunts will have to make a reservation and stay all day or hope that no other hunters are using the site and Register to Hunt)
  • Hunters must register every day and must deposit the registration slip at registration station each day with any harvest recorded, even if you made a reservation.
  • Commercial Guiding is not permitted
  • Motor vehicle operation:  Cars, trucks, motorcycles and ATVs are prohibited in all farm fields except for persons in possession of a valid Disabled Hunter Permit.  Only authorized participant vehicles may be parked in designated areas.
  • Example of No Unauthorized Vehicles Beyond This Sign placardUnless otherwise posted hunters with a valid disabled hunter permit may use ATVs to access hunting locations
  • Enforcement. The rules and regulations will be strictly enforced on all hunting sites. Anyone violating general waterfowl hunting regulations or conditions will be subject to citation and revocation of hunting privileges.
  • Hunt units will be open throughout the hunting season. Each unit is held by the reservation holder or the hunter who first parks in that unit’s parking space after 8:00 am. One party of a maximum of 4 hunters is allowed in each unit.
  • Quality Hunt units are accessible from 4am to 7 pm. Parking and entry are closed outside those hours.
  • Livestock. Hunters are reminded that in some cases livestock could be present, be aware that harming livestock could result in criminal charges.  Additionally, be aware that hunters could be held liable if they damage or destroy fences while accessing the site.
  • No excavations. No pit blinds or recesses in the ground for portable blinds may be dug on any private lands enrolled in this program. Also, hunters must not cut into ditch embankments or weaken any ditch top line. Where a ditch line or drainage trench is included in the hunt unit, hunters may stand in them. Hunters may erect a temporary, free-standing, framed blind, or use any convenient natural shrub vegetation located within the shooting areas as screening, provided that hunters do not cut or up-root vegetation and relocate it.
  • Trespassing is prohibited on adjacent properties. In this hunt, as well as everywhere else in Washington, trespassing onto someone’s property is illegal. Hunters with a Example of Safety Zone - Unlawful to Hunt Behind this Sign placardreservation are only allowed to access the property for which they have made a reservation.
  • Safety zones. Observe all safety zones around homes and out-buildings.  Do not shoot toward them from a unit boundary. Hunters may not carry a loaded firearm into any safety zone.
  • Grower and Producer’s access. Landowners/producers have access rights to their properties at any time, to do special or routine winter farming tasks or livestock checks.
  • Retrieval of birds from private lands. Unless otherwise posted, hunters do not have authorization to trespass on adjacent private lands to get downed birds.
  • Observe boundaries posted with “No Trespassing” signs. These areas are entirely off-limits.
  • Ground shooting. So-called “ground-sluicing” of birds is unethical and dangerous. In doing this, a hunter can put members of their or another hunting party at risk. The only exception would be recovering wounded game, but the shooter must be absolutely sure the down-range or background is clear and safe. If not, the shooter could be charged with reckless endangerment.
  • Decoy removal. All decoys sets and hunter materials must be removed at the end of hunt. Hunters may begin setting decoys at 4am.  
  • Litter control. With the variety of materials that can be used as decoys, there is the potential for litter. It’s important that hunters make every effort to retrieve all trash, shell casings, plastics, paper and even blow-away items from adjacent hunt units before leaving.

Remember–you are on private property by the consent of the cooperating landowners.

 

Youth and Disabled Hunters

Accommodations have been made to create quality hunting opportunities for youth and disabled hunters.  Youth hunting days will be designated throughout the season. During those times non-youth hunters may participate, however youth hunters must be allowed to actively participate in all hunting activities.  Disabled hunters (hunters possessing a valid disabled hunter permit) will be allowed to utilize ATVs to access all sites and select hunting days will be designated for those hunters. 

Hunting blind located in corn stubble field Corn stubble field with placard signs in foreground and flock of birds in the distance.

Private Hunting Lands - Hunt By Reservation

Columbia Basin Stubble Retention

Quality Hunt Partners

Hunting access for the quality hunting program is being provided with the cooperation of local agricultural producers and cattlemen.  These cooperators are allowing public access with the understanding that hunters will be respectful of the properties. 

Other hunting opportunities in the area

There are state-owned lands open for public recreation, as well as other private land opportunities in the area. These provide additional waterfowl and pheasant hunting: