(Updated February 1, 2016)
TWRA Becomes Nation's First Wildlife Agency to Start Online Streaming Platform
The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency has launched TWRA.tv, an online streaming platform to broadcast agency and local independent outdoor video content, including the award-winning series, "Tennessee Uncharted." The project is collaboration between the TWRA Extreme Outdoors TV and Horton Group, Inc.
The TWRA has become the first wildlife agency in the nation to start its own online streaming platform. Similar to Netflix or YouTube, TWRA.tv will allow the agency to stream agency-produced, new and historical programming to users across the state and world.
Subscribers will be allowed full-access to all platform content as well as the ability to upload and share their own video content. In addition, the platform will incubate a community for independent producers to distribute and monetize their own targeted outdoor recreation content.
Outdoor recreation in Tennessee generates more than $8 billion in consumer spending each year, according to the Outdoor Industry Association. As of 2015, the TWRA manages more than 1 million active hunting, fishing and boat registrations throughout the state. In addition, data reports that 78 percent of the population now watches online video every week.
"All together these trends create a huge opportunity for TWRA to serve a growing online video demand for many different outdoor audiences," said Don King, TWRA Chief of Information and Education.
"Users will be able to watch certain programming like Tennessee Uncharted for free or become a subscriber to the platform for $4.99 per month," said Scott Scrip, consultant with Horton Group. "Subscribers will then get full access to over 60 years worth of digitally-remastered agency video. Plus subscribers and producers will be able to upload, stream and even create revenue streams with their own outdoor content."
Another ground-breaking feature of TWRA.tv is that a percentage of all revenue generated on the platform will auto-direct to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation and its continued support of the conservation and media production efforts of the TWRA.
Now streaming is the complete "Tennessee Uncharted" Season 1. New episodes from Season 2 are being added weekly after airing on Public TV stations across the state and are available anytime on TWRA.tv.
Photo Contest Underway for 2016-17 Tennessee Wildlife Calendar Issue
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is now accepting entries for its 2016-17 photo contest for publication in the Tennessee Wildlife Magazine's annual calendar issue.
All interested photographers are invited to submit their best photos on fishing and wildlife species native to Tennessee, and fishing and hunting scenes in Tennessee.
Interested photographers must submit their photo entries by the March 14, 2016 deadline.
The photos will be reviewed for publication in the annual calendar edition of Tennessee Wildlife Magazine which is the summer issue. If a photo is selected for the calendar edition, the photographer will receive a cash stipend of $60.
The format is horizontal digital images on disk. Only digital images in JPEG format and of high resolution (300 dpi) sized as an 8 1/2x11 will be accepted.
Each disk submitted must have the name of the photographer stamped or written on it. No prints can be accepted. (Sorry, disks cannot be returned).
Entries can be mailed to:
Tennessee Wildlife Magazine
P.O. Box 40747
Nashville, TN 37204
Rainbow Trout Stocked at Lake Lamar Bruce
mately 600 rainbow trout into the bank-fishing pond at Lake Lamar Bruce near Saltillo. According to MDWFP Fisheries Biologist Tyler Stubbs, "This stocking will provide anglers with a unique fishing opportunity during the winter months. In addition, the trout create a great opportunity to introduce youth or new anglers to fishing because they will be easy to catch."
Anglers can harvest up to three trout per person per day with no size restrictions. Anglers must have a valid fishing license and a state lake daily or annual fishing permit to fish in the pond.
The fish were provided by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Greers Ferry National Fish Hatchery and stocked by the Pvt. John Allen National Fish Hatchery in Tupelo.
Hunters Surpass 200,000 Deer Harvested in 2015
For the fourth straight season, Arkansas hunters have passed the 200,000-deer mark in harvest. With seven weeks of archery hunting remaining, hunters have taken 208,951 deer. The high mark was set in the 2012-13 season with 213,487 deer logged.
Cory Gray, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission deer program coordinator, says the total harvest likely will fall just shy of the record now that modern gun and muzzleloader seasons have concluded.
"Typically we'll harvest around 3,500 deer statewide during January and February," Gray said. So we're going to end up with a very consistent harvest compared to the last few seasons."
Gray says the consistent harvest numbers indicate a solid deer population and season structure.
"As a deer manager, sometimes you wonder if a high number is just a one-time deal because of a change in checking or regulations," Gray said. "But when you're consistently stacking your bullets on top of each other like this, you know you're shooting true."
"We were sitting about 3,000 deer ahead of the record pace until Thanksgiving, which is usually one of our big weekends. But really bad rain and wind kept many hunters out of the woods during Thanksgiving weekend, which hurt the pace."
Gray says the same situation happened during the Christmas holiday modern gun hunt to stymie harvest numbers.
"We normally see 3,000 deer checked per day of the Christmas hunt, but thunderstorms, rain and tornadoes prevented a large harvest these days as well. Many flood prone regions were also closed during the Christmas hunt and second youth hunt, but we're still seeing a near record harvest." Archery deer season hunt runs through Feb. 29 statewide on private land and on most wildlife management areas and national wildlife refuges. Some public areas close earlier. Check the 2015-16 Arkansas Hunting Guidebook for closing dates.
Kentucky Deer Hunters Set Record
Kentucky often comes up in discussions about the best places in the country to hunt whitetail deer. The deer are plentiful, permits can be easily obtained and the state produces several trophy class bucks each year.
The 2015-16 deer season is reinforcing Kentucky's reputation by breaking records at just about every turn. Two more fell when black powder hunters finished a record late muzzleloader season and sent the state's overall harvest total soaring to unprecedented heights.
Kentucky's deer season harvest now exceeds 150,000 for the first time, and the tally will continue to rise!
"It's our highest harvest on record which is great," said Gabe Jenkins, deer program coordinator for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. "The herd is healthy and deer are reproducing. We had a couple of bad winters but we had good mast that got us through. It's all come together."
The previous record harvest of 144,409 deer occurred during the 2013-14 season. After a slight dip last season to 138,898 whitetails – then the second highest harvest total on record - hunters have taken advantage of their opportunities this year.
The modern gun season in November drives the annual harvest total. This year, hunters telechecked a record 44,314 deer on opening weekend and 105,440 overall during the firearm season.
Other highlights: A record 5,558 deer were telechecked during the statewide youth firearms weekend in October; the harvest of 8,262 deer during the October muzzleloader weekend was the second highest on record.
Roughly 300,000 people hunt deer each year in Kentucky and biologists estimated the state's deer herd at 1 million before archery season opened in early September.
Apply Online for Managed Turkey Hunts
Missouri youth, archery, and firearms turkey hunters can apply online for 2016 spring turkey managed hunts between Jan. 8 and Feb. 29 through the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) website at http://mdc.mo.gov/node/11252. Managed hunt details and application procedures are outlined on the webpage. Drawing results will be available March 14.
Spring turkey hunting youth weekend will be April 9-10 with the regular spring season running April 18 - May 8.
Detailed information on spring turkey hunting will be available in MDC's 2016 Spring Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information booklet online at mdc.mo.gov in late January with printed booklets available from permit vendors and MDC offices and nature centers around the state beginning in mid-February.