Bird Hunting Reinstated on Cape Cod
Since 1906 the Cape’s sea shore has been stocked with pheasant and hunting was been allowed since 1914, making it was one of the oldest hunting programs in the US. But in 2002 a federal suit filed by anti-hunting groups brought the hunting to a stop. The fate of the land and how it would be used for recreational purposes was in limbo.
This past September the National Park Service recommended restoring hunting opportunities on this popular federal hunting area. MA hunters rejoice. The National Park Service’s plan will reinstate pheasant stocking at the Seashore for the next 17 years while increasing the opportunities for hunting native game birds, like northern bobwhite quail and eastern turkey, by creating a more quail-friendly environment. The restoration part of the plan includes restoring and maintaining heathland and grassland habitat and as the amount of quail habitat increases over time, the number of pheasants released, or stocked, would be reduced. It is a compromise between hunters and anti’s. The real question is will the quail populations become self-sustaining. We have seen in New England wild turkey flourish and it is hoped bobwhites will too.