JEFFERSON CITY–Waterfowl hunters at three state-managed wetland areas will apply for spots under the Quick Draw (QD) system again this year, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC).
Grand Pass, Eagle Bluffs and Otter Slough conservation areas have assigned hunting spots through the online QD system for the past two years. Procedures at those three areas will remain unchanged this year.
MDC Wildlife Programs Supervisor Shawn Gruber says QD is designed to enhance convenience and offer hunters more flexibility at managed wetland areas. He says MDC has received a lot of valuable input regarding QD and will continue to solicit public feedback throughout the upcoming waterfowl season.
“Hunter input will be critical as we strive to utilize technology to make it as convenient as possible for hunters to pursue waterfowl on managed wetland areas,” said Gruber
According to Gruber, hunters who entered QD frequently were more successful in securing hunting spots than hunters who used the traditional reservation system at Missouri’s other 12 managed wetland areas.
The QD system begins accepting applications a week before the opening of waterfowl season. Hunters can apply twice a week, once for reservations for the following Friday through Monday and once for hunts occurring Tuesday through Thursday.
This is different from the traditional system used at MDC’s other managed wetlands. On those areas, hunters apply for hunting opportunities weeks or months in advance, with little control over which dates they receive and no idea how those dates will relate to weather, which is extremely important to hunting success.
MDC developed QD in response to studies that showed lack of time is a major discouragement to potential waterfowl hunters. QD saves time by letting more hunters know in advance if they will be able to hunt on a particular day, saving them long drives without knowing if they will even get to hunt. The short lead time on QD applications compared to the traditional system also allows hunters to focus their efforts on dates with favorable weather.
For more information about QD, visit mdc.mo.gov/node/10272.