Friday, June 29, 2012

TWRA Executive Director Offers Invitation to Aug. 10-11 Land Wildlife Expo

From TWRA's ED Carter

"Summer is off to a great start and before we know it, the Land and Wildlife Expo will be in session once again at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center (in Nashville). I wanted to take a moment and let you know how excited we are as an agency to be a partner in this event. One of the main focuses of the LWE is habitat enhancement for wildlife. Having worked in this field for over 40 years, I know the importance of habitat, especially on private lands. Since over 90 percent of property in Tennessee is in private ownership, it’s even more important for us as an agency to help equip land owners with the information, concepts and incentives they need to be successful. When they are successful, wildlife is the big winner.
"Please come visit our booth where our land managers and biologists will provide technical assistance and even help develop custom habitat plans for your property. They are experts at helping land owners navigate through the maze of federal and state incentive programs designed to help this effort. We’ll have real world examples of food plots and native grasses on the ground just a short shuttle ride away.
"We also plan to play a big part in putting on the Big Buck Contest.
"We look forward to seeing you at our booth at the Land and Wildlife Expo, August 10 - 11."
- Ed Carter, TWRA Executive Director

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Darryl Worley Rendition of “The Andy Griffith Show” Theme Song Remains Available to Aid in Disaster Fund-Raising Efforts

From TWRA  

NASHVILLE --- Country music artist Darryl Worley is continuing his efforts as an ambassador for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and other state organizations across the country who manage the nation’s natural resources and their efforts to aid those affected by recent natural disasters.
What began as a simple idea to use the song to promote fishing grew to include a music video and a national fund-raising effort. The campaign, spearheaded by TWRA and the Franklin, Tennessee based record label, Outdoor Music, was built around the song known as “The Fishin’ Hole” which happens to be the theme song for the old Andy Griffith Show.
It features Darryl and long-time songwriting buddy, Wynn Varble, (co-writers of one of Darryl’s biggest hits, “Have You Forgotten”) enjoying a day on the lake with a surprise ending featuring some well-known pro fishermen, Elite Pro anglers Terry Scroggins, Gerald Swindle, Kota Kiriyama, and Brent Chapman.
"Everyone knows that melody, and it will stick in your head for days if you're not careful," said Worley at the time the project was launched. "Even though I'm a huge Andy Griffith Show fan, I did not know the song had lyrics. They are clever and give the song brand new life."
The music video, which was filmed near Darryl’s home in his native Hardin County, Tenn., was released late last fall during the Southeaster Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies conference. During concert appearances, Darryl has performed the song and invited his audience to pull out their cell phones and text the word FISH to 50555. This allows a $10 donation to be added to the user's phone bill.
These funds are received by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation. As a thank you gift, a link to a free ringtone of the song is sent to the donor's phone. The net proceeds are then used to help restore levees, replace equipment lost or damaged in the disasters and re-stock fish in waters affected by tornadoes and flooding. Donations from other parts of the country are distributed back to the state of origin's wildlife agency.
"The Fishin' Hole" music video was produced and directed by Jon Ward (Jonny Grand Films & Media) and Richard Prather (Dalia Entertainment Group) with executive producers, Eric Rhodes (All Star Cast) and Craig Brinks (Dalia Entertainment Group). "The Fishin' Hole" song is available on iTunes and at
Additionally, pro anglers Terry Scroggins and Gerald Swindle, who appear in the music video, have contributed by recording a Public Service Announcement for the campaign.
The song is available on iTunes and at

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Law Aimed at Controlling Expansion of Invasive Wild Hogs

From TWF 

  NASHVILLE, TENN. - A new law strengthening the penalties for illegal translocation of wild-appearing swine goes into effect July 1, thanks to an effort supported by the Tennessee Wildlife Federation (TWF) and the state wildlife resources agency, along with statewide agriculture and public health interests.
  Under the provisions of the new law, a person who illegally transports or releases wild hogs (i.e., wild-appearing swine) into the wild without documented approval from the state Department of Agriculture can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, fined as much as $2,500 and sentenced to up to 11 months and 29 days in jail for each wild-appearing swine illegally translocated.
State Rep. Ron Lollar (R-Bartlett) and Sen. Steve Southerland (R-Morristown) sponsored the legislation. Earlier this year, TWF and TWRA joined into a Memorandum of Understanding with the state Farm Bureau Federation, Soybean Producers, Pork Producers and departments of health and agriculture to work towards the eradication of wild hogs where practical, and to control populations elsewhere.
  "Something needed to be done to address the proliferation, which is reaching epidemic proportions in parts of the state," said Rep. Lollar, who served as chair of the House Conservation and Environment Committee.
  "This new law is another tool to protect farmers and landowners from the destruction the pigs cause, and hopefully it gets the attention of anyone who is considering the illegal transportation and release of this invasive species."
  Last year, TWRA announced new measures to combat the growing hog problem, removing the non-native wild pigs from big-game status and marking them for eradication through aggressive trapping, and working with landowners to facilitate their removal by virtually any means necessary.
  "These pigs can wipe out agricultural crops and wildlife habitat with amazing efficiency," said Mike Butler, CEO of the Tennessee Wildlife Federation. "The evidence shows that wild hog populations are popping up in non-contiguous areas, which suggests that they are being transported and released illegally. This new law is a much stronger deterrent."
Wild hogs are prolific reproducers, with a sow capable of bearing a litter of 12-15 piglets every 115 days. They do massive damage to the land through feeding and wallowing; they are also omnivorous, and will eat just about anything they can find. Studies have clearly shown that the hogs eat turkey eggs and poults, and even the occasional fawn or other unsuspecting mammal.
  Other ground-nesting birds, amphibians and reptiles can suffer population decreases, and the pigs serve as a reservoir for diseases that can affect both livestock and humans.
  Wild hogs also root up acres of land, which requires significant time and money to repair. In the U.S., damage caused by wild hogs is conservatively estimated at $1.5 billion annually.
  Founded in 1946, the not-for-profit Tennessee Wildlife Federation's mission is to champion the conservation, sound management and enjoyment of Tennessee's wildlife and natural resources for current and future generations through stewardship, advocacy and education. For more information, visit

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Application Period Deadline May 31 for Tennessee’s Fourth Elk Hunt


  NASHVILLE --- The deadline to apply for participation in Tennessee’s fourth managed elk hunt is approaching. Sportsmen have until midnight (CDT) on May 31 to submit their application to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.
  The fourth elk hunt will be held Oct. 15-19, 2012 at the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area, located off I-75, north of Knoxville. Once again, there will be five Elk Hunting Zones designated at the WMA.
  Persons may apply at any TWRA license agent, TWRA regional office or online at
As in the previous three hunts, five individuals will be selected to participate. Four of the participants will be selected through a computer drawing conducted by the TWRA. Nonresident applicants will be restricted to no greater than 25 percent of the drawn permits. The fifth participant will be the recipient of a permit that is donated to a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), which this year is the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation.
In addition, newly-added this year is a Young Sportsman Elk Hunt. After completing the regular elk hunt draw, a special computerized youth drawing will take place for resident applicants who will be between the ages of 13-16 on the opening day of the elk hunt. The lucky recipient will be awarded the special youth elk tag. The dates of the youth hunt will be Oct. 20-21 and the participant would be able to hunt on any of the five elk hunting zones designated at the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area. A youth entering the draw must designate if he/she would prefer to participate in the youth hunt or regular hunt if drawn.
  There is no application fee for current Tennessee Annual Sportsman License holders, Lifetime Sportsman License holders, or an Annual Senior Citizen Permit (Type 167). All other applicants will be charged a $10 non-refundable permit fee, and an internet usage fee (if applying online or by telephone). For those applying at a license agent, there is a $1 agent fee in addition to the $10 non-refundable permit fee.
  The successful applicants will be announced at the June meeting of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission in Nashville. Successful applicants will not be allowed to reapply for an elk quota hunt permit for 10 years following a successful draw.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Clarification Made Concerning Archery Turkey Harvest


NASHVILLE --- The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency is making a clarification as there have been several inquiries concerning the harvest of wild turkeys in counties that have a fall turkey gun season.
Archers are allowed to harvest one turkey during the archery-only deer season in each of the counties listed that have a fall turkey gun season. (A list of counties that have a fall turkey season is located on page 40 of the 2011 Tennessee Hunting and Trapping Guide).
The TWRA suggests all archery hunters obtain a 2011 Tennessee Hunting and Trapping Guide. The guides are available where hunting and fishing licenses are sold and on the TWRA website,

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

TN Brings Home 7 National Champioinships From SCTP Event

From TWF

TN Scholastic Clay Target Program's Teams Outshine 36 Other States with 23 Top Five Finishes
SPARTA, Ill. - Twenty one teams from the Tennessee Scholastic Clay Target Program competed in the sport's national championship event, held July 12-16 in Sparta, Ill. The result was seven national championships, 23 top-five finishes across all divisions, and the high overall shooter of the tournament.

Tennessee's 28 medals far surpassed those of the 36 other states with teams in the event, which included thousands of student-athletes from across the nation.

"Tennessee has become a pre-eminent state in scholastic shooting sports, and our teams did not disappoint at this year's national championships," said Andrew Peercy, who serves as TNSCTP's manager through the
Tennessee Wildlife Federation, which runs the program. "Side by side, the males and females that make up our state's teams shot the lights out in Sparta."

The seven national championships included: Arlington High School (Shelby County), varsity trap; Richland Trap Team (Giles County), junior varsity trap; Hoodlum Alley Claybusters (Bedford County), intermediate entry trap; and Bethel University, collegiate skeet. The Jefferson County Patriot Shooters won two national championships in the "Game & Fish" state divisions, both as the high all-around team and in the trap event, as well as a high all-around championship in the "4-H" division.

Cody Hart from Houston High School in Shelby County was named the individual trap national champion and the high overall shooter of the tournament. It was the fourth year in a row that a Tennessee athlete has won the high overall award in trap, a division that included more than 1,200 shooters from across the nation at this year's event. For his efforts, Hart was also named winner of the Jeanette C. Rudy Cup, for the best performance among Tennessee shooters at the national championships.

For complete results from the national championships, visit

Four colleges in Tennessee offer scholarships for competitive shotgun sports, including skeet, sporting clays and trap. Student-athletes can earn scholarships and financial assistance at Bethel University, Middle Tennessee State University, Tennessee Technological University, and the University of Tennessee at Martin. The TNSCTP Scholarship Fund will award $15,000 in scholarships to SCTP athletes this year.

TNSCTP is a program of the Tennessee Wildlife Federation, with approximately 2,000 student-athletes participating on an annual basis in competitions at the local, state and national levels. The program is made possible by support from key partners including the Tennessee Army National Guard, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Rio Ammunition. To learn more, visit

Monday, July 18, 2011

Permit for 2011 Elk Hunt To Be Auctioned on EBAY Throuh July 23


The final permit for participation in Tennessee’s third managed elk hunt will go to the successful bidder in an eBay auction from July 14-23. Proceeds from the auction benefit the state’s elk restoration program.

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) again donated a permit to a Non-Governmental Organization to join four others who were selected from a computer drawing. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation (TWRF) is the recipient of this year’s donated special take permit.

The TWRF will award its permit to the successful high bidder through the eBay auction. The successful bidder will participate in the hunt along with Richard R. Rutherford of Walland, Terrell S. Holt of Columbia, John Mark Alston of Knoxville, and Jody A. Moore of Loudon who were announced as winners of the drawing during the June meeting of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission.

The 2011 Tennessee Elk Hunt will be held Monday, Oct. 17 through Friday, Oct. 21 at the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area in East Tennessee. The North Cumberland WMA will be divided into five elk hunting zones (EHZ). Each hunter will be designated an EHZ in a drawing to be conducted at a later date at a TWRA Region IV location.

All proceeds from the sale of the remaining special bull elk tag will go exclusively to the elk restoration program. The TWRF is partnering with Bill Swan, an active member of the Chattanooga Chapter of Safari Club International (SCI), on the promotion and sale of the last elk tag.

More information concerning the hunt will be listed in the eBay auction. Search “Tennessee Elk Permit” on EBay to find the listing.

TWRF is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting habitat conservation, an ethic of land stewardship, and Tennessee's hunting and fishing heritage for the benefit of TWRA and Tennessee's outdoor enthusiasts.