Phillips County News - One Nation, Under God

By Aaron Griffith
Wildlife Refuge Specialist Bowdoin NWR WMD 

Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge Announces Changes to Upland Gamebird Hunting Regulations


September 21, 2022

Bowdoin National Wildlife Refuge is no longer requiring blaze orange clothing when hunting upland gamebirds. As with the State regulations, it is strongly recommended that hunters wear at least an orange hat to reduce the chance of an accident. This change was made to be consistent with state regulations pertaining to upland gamebird hunting.

The East Unit of Bowdoin NWR will open for upland gamebird hunting only, from December 1 until the close of the state season. The western portion of the refuge, which is open to hunting, will remain open to all hunters throughout the special season. The no hunting zone around the refuge headquarters and administrative area will remain closed.

Going forward, the East Unit will open on December 1st for all hunters for upland gamebird hunting only. The East Unit of Bowdoin NWR offers migratory birds a place of rest during migration. To meet this, from September 1st to November 30th, foot traffic in the East Unit is prohibited off of the Auto Tour Road.

There will no longer be a special youth season in the East Unit, but youth pheasant hunters are encouraged to hunt the West Unit of the Refuge during the State’s youth only pheasant weekend on September 24th & 25th.

These changes were made to simplify Refuge-specific hunting regulations and be more in line with state regulations, as well as meeting the purpose of the Refuge’s establishment.

All Refuge-specific regulations and State of Montana hunting regulations relating to upland game bird hunting apply. Refuge-specific hunting regulations can be obtained at the hunter kiosk or the refuge headquarters. When hunting on Refuge lands hunters may only possess and use non-toxic shot. Vehicle travel and parking is restricted to the Refuge auto tour route and along old Highway 2.

Bowdoin NWR is located 7 miles east of Malta, on old Highway 2. Office hours are Monday-Friday, 7:00 am – 3:30 pm. For further information call us at 406-654-2863.


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