by Ranger Chris Gilliland
The 2015 Tenkiller Lake Youth Deer Hunt kicked off November 6 as selected young hunters gathered at the Lake Tenkiller Project Office. Youth were met by rangers and staff members where a luncheon and safety meeting was conducted.
Topics of the pre-hunt meeting included safe hunting practices, gun safety, hunting laws and regulations, environmental stewardship and sustainability goals of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and a lottery style pick of their designated hunting areas.
The young hunters, accompanied by an adult, were allowed to begin their three day hunt that evening after the meeting.
It did not take them long to start making this year’s hunt a successful one. Throughout the weekend, seven of the nine young hunters successfully harvested deer in which two hunters were able to fill both of their allowed tags.
During this three day event, these lucky youngsters made lifelong memories consisting of new friendships with staff members and other hunt participants, great outdoor experiences in which some were able to harvest their very first deer, and how to be more responsible, ethical, and safer hunters.
Rangers and staff assisted the young hunters throughout the weekend by providing information on the hunt areas, assisting with the retrieval and care of harvested animals, coordinating the hunt in compliance with state and federal hunting laws and regulations, and establishing and creating a safe and fun weekend for everyone involved.
The Tenkiller Youth Hunt is part of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s Controlled Youth Deer Hunts where applicants are picked randomly by a computerized drawing system.
Qualified individuals may apply online at www.wildlifedepartment.com during the specified application period (usually starting around April and ending mid May) for their chance at participating in this great opportunity.