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Water Shortages Will Limit Waterfowl Hunting Opportunities

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) will reopen the Shasta Valley Wildlife Area in Siskiyou County to limited waterfowl hunting this season after a complete closure the past two seasons.

Although many parts of California received record rainfall and snowpack during the winter and spring of 2022-23, northeastern California remained comparatively dry. As a result, only dry field hunting will be allowed for waterfowl hunting this season at the Shasta Valley Wildlife Area.

The Northeastern Zone waterfowl season runs from Oct. 7, 2023, through Jan. 17, 2024. Hunting at the Shasta Valley Wildlife Area will be allowed on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays throughout the season.

The 4,700-acre Shasta Valley Wildlife Area provides important seasonal wetlands for migrating waterfowl with water supplied by three storage reservoirs on the property. Two of those reservoirs – Steamboat Lake and Bass Lake – are completely dry. Trout Lake is currently near 50 percent capacity and will serve as the closed zone for the 2023-24 waterfowl season where no hunting will be permitted.

The Shasta Valley Wildlife Area will be open for upland game bird hunting for dove, quail, snipe and pheasant as regulations permit. Pheasant hunting is allowed only on Sundays during the season and will be by reservation only with no walk-ins, sweat line or refills. A Type A or B season pass is required for all adult hunters (not juniors). Reservation applications for Sunday pheasant hunts are available at CDFW’s Online License Sales and Services website.

Waterfowl hunting opportunities will vary at other Northeastern Zone state and federal lands popular with duck and goose hunters. Hunters are strongly advised to call ahead in preparing for any Northeastern Zone waterfowl hunt.