Oklahoma wetlands are a popular stopover for many migrating shorebirds and the Wildlife Department has scheduled a series of tours at the renowned Hackberry Flat Wildlife Management Area that features these northern-bound travelers.
“Hackberry Flat is a major refueling station for these birds, and they take full advantage of our wetland units in late April and early May,” said Melynda Hickman, biologist for the Wildlife Department. “Our tours will take visitors on an open-air trailer ride around the most active units so they can experience these wetland habitats at a truly amazing time.”
Visitors will have nine opportunities to tour the wetlands with a biologist Fridays and Saturdays from April 12 through May 4. Reservations are required for these free events and children must be at least 8 years old due to the length of tours. Contact Hickman at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (405) 990-4977 for more information.
Bird watchers and photographers can visit Hackberry Flat and other Wildlife Department-owned lands outside of these migration tours with a valid conservation passport or hunting or fishing license, available at wildlifedepartment.com. All sportsmen - especially lifetime license holders and returning customers - are urged to sign in to update their information and complete their account setup. The accompanying free mobile app from the Wildlife Department is available for Apple or Android devices and allows customers to purchase and store licenses on their phone.
Hackberry Flat Wildlife Management Area, located near Frederick in southwestern Oklahoma, offers 7,120 acres of wildlife recreational opportunities. The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, along with many conservation-minded partners, restored this legendary wetland, creating a vast mosaic of wetland habitats for prairie waterfowl, shorebirds and other wetland-dependent birds. Upland areas of native sunflowers and cultivated fields interspersed with mesquite have become one of the state’s premier dove-hunting destinations. Open for scheduled events, the Hackberry Flat Center offers interpretive guidance for wildlife enthusiasts, students and educators. Participants of these educational programs are exempt from needing a Wildlife Conservation Passport or valid hunting or fishing license while on Hackberry Flat WMA. More information can be found at wildlifedepartment.com.