The Lowcountry is a special place. The charm and uniqueness of the land is a treasure to the people who live here, and is an attraction to others who want to visit and experience something that doesn’t exist anywhere else.
Our rules and regulations for hunting and fishing are quite liberal, yet our resources in South Carolina are stable, and offer fantastic opportunity for the outdoorsman.
Hunters come from all over the state, and even other states to hunt turkeys during the early season here. These hunters contribute to the local economy. They buy gas, food, lodging and more.
Five states open on March 15, but only South Carolina has the Lowcountry — a destination. If the early season opener is changed, they will go elsewhere.
Recent attempts to standardize the turkey season statewide and lower the limit is not a good thing for our region. The changes offered by the Department of Natural Resources and introduced into the Legislature this past year were not discussed in public meetings and caught most turkey hunters by surprise. The diversity of our state, its topography, climate and traditions are factors that cry out for a turkey season that varies by region.
I support adding more opportunity, but leave the Lowcountry turkey season in zone six as is — March 15 to May 1st. Change the rest of the state to the proposed dates of March 20 to May 5. Change the limit to four, but drop the archery requirement. Not enough turkey hunters use archery equipment to make that requirement valid.
Contact Sens. Chip Campsen and Larry Grooms, or members of your House Delegation to let them know that our renewable resources and traditions are important to the people of the Lowcountry. Change may be good for the rest of the state, but let’s leave the Lowcountry’s early turkey season alone.