Cookson Wildlife Management Area

By: Curt Allen, Biologist for Cookson, Sparrow Hawk and Ozark Plateau WMA’s.   cooksonwma@lrec.org   Phone: (918) 260-8959.

Driving Directions: From Cookson: 5.2 miles east on Blue Top Road.

Area Description: The Cookson WMA consists of approximately 14,725 acres in southeastern Cherokee and southwestern Adair Counties.  Located approximately 6 miles east of Cookson on Bluetop Road.

The WMA is a mixture of uplands with scattered meadows and openings, found generally at lower elevations.  Dense stands of oak-hickory timber with some short leaf pine on rolling, rocky, and relatively steep hills predominates the area.  Fields and meadows with improved domestic grains, like clover and rye are found throughout.  The average annual precipitation is about 41 inches.

The management area has some general public access, but is open mainly for controlled hunts.  Consult regulations for area use restrictions.

Game Species of Interest: 

            Bear: No season. Animals are present on the WMA but very secretive.

            Deer: White-tailed deer are present in good numbers but are highly sought after. 

            Turkey: Eastern wild turkeys are present in fair numbers but are highly sought after. 

            Quail: Bobwhite quail are present in very limited numbers. 

Rabbit: Cottontail rabbits are present in good numbers. 

            Squirrel: Both fox and gray squirrels are abundant.   

            Furbearers: Coyote, bobcat, gray fox, and raccoon can be found on the area. 

            Dove: Very limited opportunity.  Not a major game species on the area. 

            Waterfowl: Limited opportunity.  Restricted to area ponds. 

            Elk: Present in low numbers.  Limited hunting through the controlled hunts program.

Nongame Species of Interest:

            Bald eagle: Eagles occasionally winter on an impoundment known as Buzzard Lake. 

Description of Fish and Wildlife Management Practices:

Management efforts focus on improving the forage base for game species by controlled burning, mowing, timber management and establishing agricultural food plots.  Annually, 150-200 acres (50-75 food plots) are planted on the area.  Ponds are scattered throughout for wildlife watering.  Those holding water year around are stocked with bass, sunfish and catfish.

Camping and Facilities:
One designated primitive camping area is available for hunters.  More convenient accommodations can be found in Tahlequah.  The Tahlequah Chamber of Commerce can be reached at (918) 456-3742. 

Fishing Opportunities:
Fishing is limited to those area ponds that hold water year around.  Buzzard Lake (approximately 7 acres) is the primary source available.  Light tackle is generally appropriate.

Maps:

Cookson WMA Map - best general purpose map, pdf format (8.5x11)

US Geological Survey Map,  Oklahoma Geological Survey Branch  -  Norman, Ok.  -  405-325-3031,
Bunch Quadrangle  -  Cost $4.50 plus $2.50 shipping

Regulations: Seasons on public lands section of hunting regulations

For additional information and area attractions:

www.GreenCountryOK.com
1-800-922-2118

Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department
Post Office Box 52002
Oklahoma City, OK 73152-2002
(800) 652-6552 or (405) 521-2409
www.travelok.com

Upper McClellan-Kerr Waterway Association
PO Box 2361
Muskogee, OK 74402
918-684-6363
1-888-687-6137

Muskogee Convention and Tourism
412 Boston, Muskogee OK 74402
918-684-6363
1-888-687-6137
www.mymuskogee.com

Stilwell Area Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 845
Stilwell OK 74960
918-696-7845

Tulsa Convention and Visitors Bureau
Williams Center Tower II
Two West Second Street, Tulsa OK 74103
918-585-1201
1-800-558-3311
www.visittulsa.com

Tahlequah
918-456-3742
1-800-456-4860

Greater Tenkiller Area Association
PO Box Ten-K
Cookson OK 74427
918-457-4403
1-888-867-4403
www.laketenkiller.com

 

PLEASE CONSULT WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA GENERAL REGULATIONS AND PUBLIC LANDS RESTRICTIONS IN HUNTING REGULATIONS.