Department of Natural Resources
Oct. 2, 2020
Waterfowl hunters at Michigan’s Wetland Wonders – the state’s seven premier managed waterfowl hunt areas, located across the southern Lower Peninsula – should expect significant changes to the daily drawing process at waterfowl check stations for the 2020 hunting season.
The changes have been implemented to maintain the health and safety of employees and waterfowl hunters in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The plan for managed waterfowl hunts this fall is linked to the MI Safe Start Plan. If southern Michigan remains in its current phase of the plan, hunters can expect managed hunts to occur as outlined below. Operations may be adjusted during the hunting season if southern Michigan is moved into a different phase of the MI Safe Start Plan.
At Fish Point, Nayanquing Point, Shiawassee River and Harsens Island, waterfowl drawings will occur in the morning only, six days a week instead of seven. Fish Point will be closed Mondays, Nayanquing Point Tuesdays, Harsens Island Wednesdays and Shiawassee River Thursdays. Morning drawings will occur at 5:30 at Fish Point, Nayanquing Point and Harsens Island, and at 5 at Shiawassee River. Hunting permits for successful parties will be valid all day until the close of shooting hours.
Except for opening weekend (Oct. 10-11), self-registration will be available independent of the drawings at Fish Point, Nayanquing Point and Shiawassee River for several zones that are not available during the drawing, such as marsh scramble areas. On closed days, there will be no hunting allowed in zones that require a permit to hunt, either through a drawing or through self-registration. Other zones that do not require a permit to hunt still will be open for hunting.
The opening weekend reserved hunts at Shiawassee River, Fish Point, Harsens Island and Nayanquing Point will have both a morning and afternoon draw to fulfill the successful reserved waterfowl hunt applications.
At Fennville Farm, Muskegon Wastewater and Pointe Mouillee, waterfowl drawings will be similar to previous years. Fennville Farm will hold drawings at 5:30 Saturday mornings for permits valid all day and at 11 a.m. Sundays for permits valid until the close of shooting hours. Self-registration will be available Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
Muskegon Wastewater will hold drawings at 5:30 Tuesday and Saturday mornings for permits valid all day and at 11 a.m. Thursdays for permits valid until the close of shooting hours.
Pointe Mouillee will hold drawings at 5:30 Tuesday and Sunday mornings, as well as the morning of Oct. 10 (opening day), for permits valid all day and at 11 a.m. Thursdays for permits valid until the close of shooting hours. The Brancheau Unit of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge will not be included in the daily drawings this year. Pointe Mouillee will hold its drawings at its shop yard, located at 10998 U.S. Turnpike Road in South Rockwood, and not at the headquarters to help meet safety protocols.
Safety protocols will be in place for all drawings to reduce contact:
Additionally, there are several important changes to drawing rules and managed hunt procedures to minimize contact:
Information about youth and veterans preference drawings and any date changes will be coming soon.
Additional safety guidelines, changes to managed hunt procedures and details about each area can be found at Michigan.gov/WetlandWonders.
An accompanying photo is available below for download. Caption information follows. Credit Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
Waterfowl hunter: The Michigan Department of Natural Resources advises hunters to expect significant changes to the daily drawing process at its managed waterfowl hunt areas for the 2020 hunting season.