News of the Week

September 24, 2015
Destination Outdoors: Cross Timbers WMA
     The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) manages more than 1.6 million acres of public land. In a continuing effort to publicize the wonderful outdoor opportunities that exist, a Department-managed area will be featured each month in a series of "Destination Outdoors" news releases. 
      In south-central Oklahoma, Cross Timbers Wildlife Management Area (WMA) consists of 10,300 acres of oak, hickory and native grass prairies. The WMA is commonly known as a dove and deer hunting destination due to the well-planned management practices, but the WMA also supports a variety of nongame species.
     Cross Timbers WMA is situated in the middle of Oklahoma's cross timbers ecoregion. The WMA houses an array of plant communities that reflect the transition between the forests of eastern Oklahoma and the grasslands of the Great Plains. Before the ODWC purchased the WMA in 2011, it was used for agricultural purposes. Biologists have since created a management plan that will get the landscape looking as it did 100 years ago with blackjack oak, post oak savannah and native grass prairie. 
     Game species such as deer, turkey and dove exist on the area, offering plenty of hunting opportunity. Dove hunting has become increasingly popular on the area in the past few years. Deer archery hunting has also become more popular. Except for a few days in October and November, archers have from Oct. 1 to Jan. 15 to hunt Cross Timbers WMA without the presence of muzzleloader and rifle hunters. Deer muzzleloader, deer rifle and spring turkey hunts are available through the Controlled Hunts Program. 
     While hunting is becoming more popular on the area, nongame species should not go unnoticed. Cross Timbers offers an essential habitat for nongame animals such as neotropical migrant birds and native flora and fauna. Biologists documented 173 wildlife species on the area, eight of which are considered species of greatest conservation need.
     Cross Timbers WMA has reinforced the local populations of wildlife through sound management practices, making it a great destination for visitors interested in hunting and wildlife viewing. All visitors must have a valid hunting or fishing license, or a Conservation Passport. For driving directions, contact information and more information, click here.

Destination Outdoors: Cross Timbers WMA
Learn more about Cross Timbers WMA.