The September calendar released by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, CDFW, includes many activities throughout the region. As a reminder, all calendar items are subject to change due to the changing conditions and guidance related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, residents are asked to continue to adhere to all current safety protocols.
Wildlife areas, ecological reserves and other properties may be closed due to wildfires or wildfire damage. Hunters and outdoor enthusiasts are strongly encouraged to check for closures before leaving on any recreational trip.
Various Days — Shared Habitat Alliance for Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Access Permit Application Deadlines for Multiple Hunting Opportunities. Wild pig, deer, bear, turkey, dove and quail hunts are available through the SHARE program. A $11.75 non-refundable application fee (plus handling fees) is charged for each hunt choice. For more information, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/share.
General Bear Season Opening in Select Deer Zones. General black bear season will open concurrently with the general deer hunting season in deer zones A, B, C, D, X8, X9A, X9B, X10 and X12 and extend through December 25. Please note these deer zones have varying opening season dates. General season for black bears opens in remaining deer hunting X zones on October 8 and extends through December 25. CDFW shall close the season earlier if 1,700 bears have been reported taken. For daily updates on reported bear harvest, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/bear or call toll-free (888) 277-6398. Also, visit fgc.ca.gov/regulations/current/mammalregs for a description of the current mammal hunting regulations.
Ecological Reserve Tours at Elkhorn Slough, 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. Volunteers lead walks highlighting the natural history of the Elkhorn Slough at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday. No reservation is required and individuals may join on a first-come, first-served basis until capacity is reached. Groups of six or more should call ahead at (831) 728-2822 to reserve a tour. For more information, visit www.elkhornslough.org/esnerr/tours.
Guided Wetland Tours by Reservation at Gray Lodge Wildlife Area, 3207 Rutherford Road, Gridley. A wildlife naturalist will lead any group, school or organization on a half-mile route through the diverse wetlands of the Gray Lodge Wildlife Area. General information includes wildlife identification, behavior patterns and conservation efforts. The experience can be catered to include requested information. Each tour is limited to 20 people. COVID-19 guidelines will be followed, which may include masking and/or physical distancing. Come prepared and be respectful of other visitors. For more information, call (530) 846-7505 or email Lori.Dieter@wildlife.ca.gov.
Sept. 1 — Mourning Dove, White-winged Dove, Spotted Dove and Ringed Turtle Dove Early Season Opens, extending through September 15. For more information on upland game bird seasons and limits, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.
California Wildlife Conservation Board Lower American River Conservancy Program Advisory Committee Meeting, 1 p.m., California Natural Resources Agency Headquarters, First Floor Auditorium, 715 P St., Sacramento. The public is welcome. For more information, visit wcb.ca.gov.
Sept. 3 — Free Fishing Day. The second of two Free Fishing Days being offered by CDFW in 2022 is scheduled September 3. While all fishing regulations – such as bag and size limits, gear restrictions, report card requirements, fishing hours and stream closures – remain in effect, anyone can fish without purchasing a fishing license on Free Fishing Days. For more information, visit wildlife.ca.gov/licensing/fishing/free-fishing-days.
Sept. 3-11 — California Biodiversity Day Celebrations. California Biodiversity Day takes place on September 7 of each year, marking the anniversary of the launch of the California Biodiversity Initiative in 2018. This annual event celebrates our state’s exceptional biodiversity, while also encouraging actions to protect it. This year, we are excited to have many partners joining us to host California Biodiversity Day events from September 3-11. For a list of events, visit resources.ca.gov/biodiversityday2022. For additional information, contact Madeline Drake, CDFW Biodiversity Coordinator, at Madeline.Drake@wildlife.ca.gov or (916) 704-3092.
iNaturalist Bioblitz on the Gray Lodge Wildlife Area, 3207 Rutherford Road, Gridley. Join CDFW as we celebrate Biodiversity Week at the Gray Lodge Wildlife Area September 3-11. In late summer, the changing habitat entices migratory wildlife to this oasis of fresh food and new places to rest. Participants can help contribute to the scientific species list for Gray Lodge by using the iNaturalist website/app and cataloguing the incredible biodiversity on this property. Visit the iNaturalist event page to learn more about how to get involved.
Sept. 5 — Last Day for Recreational Ocean Salmon Fishing from the Oregon/California State Line to Point Arena. For more information, visit the ocean salmon webpage at wildlife.ca.gov/oceansalmon or call the CDFW Ocean Salmon Regulations Hotline at (707) 576-3429 or the National Marine Fisheries Service Ocean Salmon Regulations Hotline at (800) 662-9825.
Sept. 7 — Biodiversity Trivia Night, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., via Zoom. Join the Elkhorn Slough Reserve for a virtual trivia night. Compete with friends while celebrating California’s amazing biodiversity. Registration is free but required. To register, visit the Zoom meeting registration page.
Sept. 10 — Guided Walk at Gray Lodge Wildlife Area, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., 3207 Rutherford Road, Gridley. In celebration of Biodiversity Day, CDFW’s Gray Lodge Wildlife Area will be leading a tour out of Parking Lot #14. This annual event celebrates our state’s exceptional biodiversity, while also encouraging actions to protect it. The pace will allow for photography and chatting about and recording species along the way, though we will go as far as time allows. Please visit the iNaturalist event page to learn more about how to get involved.
Sept. 10 — Guided BioBlitz Scavenger Hunt at Nimbus Hatchery, 10:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m., 2001 Nimbus Road, Rancho Cordova. In honor of Biodiversity Week, Nimbus Hatchery will host an outdoor guided scavenger hunt for all ages to identify native species found along the River Discovery Trail. Our guide will help participants learn how to use the iNaturalist app to log observations. Guests should bring a mobile device with connection to access the app. There will also be an old-fashioned scavenger hunt available for those who wish to use nature guidebooks instead of a mobile device. We encourage guests to bring their own nature guidebooks to identify native species. Participants can register via the 10:30 a.m. Eventbrite registration page or the 11:45 a.m. Eventbrite registration page. For more information, email Stephanie.Ambrosia@wildlife.ca.gov.
Advanced Hunter Education Clinic: Grasslands Waterfowl Clinic, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., San Luis National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, 7376 S. Wolfson Road, Los Banos. This clinic will teach basic waterfowl hunting and area specific tips for the Grasslands waterfowl hunting areas. Participants will learn how to access these areas and be given information that will ensure a more successful trip. To register, visit www.register-ed.com/events/view/182287. For more information, email Shawn.Olague@wildlife.ca.gov or call (209) 827-0895.
Advanced Hunter Education Clinic: Suisun Marsh/Grizzly Island Waterfowl Clinic, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Grizzly Ranch in Solano County, 4179 Van Sickle Road, Suisun City. This clinic will teach basic waterfowl hunting and location specific tips for the Suisan Marsh and Grizzly Island waterfowl hunting areas. Participants will learn how to access these areas and be given information that will ensure a more successful trip. To register, visit www.register-ed.com/events/view/182457. For more information, email Shawn.Olague@wildlife.ca.gov or call (209) 827-0895.
Teachers on the Reserve Workshop, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. Explore the Elkhorn Slough Reserve’s K-12 field trip opportunities. Learn about watersheds, wetlands and estuaries while exploring the many free resources offered for field trips and extended learning. Teachers will leave with new lesson ideas and the confidence to engage in immersive, site-based field trips. Registration is free but required. To register, visit www.elkhornslough.org/calendar.
Sooty (Blue) Grouse General Season Opens, extending through October 10. For more information, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.
White-tailed Ptarmigan General and Archery Season Opens, extending through September 18. For more information, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.
Mountain Quail General Season Opens in Zone Q1, extending through October 14. For more information on upland game bird seasons and limits, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.
Tree Squirrel General Season Opens, extending through January 29, 2023. For more information on small game seasons and limits, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/small-game.
Sept. 15 — Feather River Fish Hatchery Ladder Opening, 5 Table Mountain Blvd., Oroville. The ladder will open September 15 and salmon spawning will begin the following week, continuing through approximately mid-November. For more information, call (530) 538-2222 or visit wildlife.ca.gov/fishing/hatcheries/feather-river.
California Fish and Game Commission Wildlife Resources Committee Meeting, time to be determined, Los Angeles County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office, Weights and Measures Department, Butterfly Room, 12300 Lower Azusa Road, Arcadia. The meeting will also be held via webinar/teleconference. For more information, visit fgc.ca.gov.
Sept. 17 — General Deer Season Opens. General deer season opens in zones B1-3, B5, B6, C1-4, D6, D7, X9a, X9b and X12. Hunters should check for area closures and restrictions before heading to their destination. For information on land closures, contact the agency in charge of the hunting grounds. More information about general deer season opener dates, end dates and additional hunts is available at wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/deer. Please remember to report deer tags. All deer tags purchased, whether used for a hunt or not, must be reported. Successful hunters must report their tags within 30 days of their successful hunt or by January 31, 2023, whichever is first. Hunters who are unsuccessful or who do not hunt are also required to report by January 31, 2023. Please visit www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/internetsales/customersearch/begin for information on reporting. Hunters are reminded that as of July 1, 2019, nonlead ammunition is required when taking any wildlife for any purpose in California.
Sept. 17 — Band-tailed Pigeon Season Opens in the North Zone, extending through September 25. For more information on upland game bird seasons and limits, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.
Great American River Cleanup, 9 a.m. to noon, Nimbus Hatchery, 2001 Nimbus Road, Gold River. Volunteers needed! Join us to remove trash along the American River Parkway and riverbanks near Nimbus Hatchery. Please bring water, sunscreen and snacks. For more information and to register, visit apps.arpf.org/volunteer-opportunities?VO=236.
Sept. 17 and 18 — Youth Waterfowl Hunt Days for Northeastern California Zone. To participate, hunters must be 17 years of age or younger and be accompanied by a non-hunting adult 18 years of age or older. People should contact the wildlife area or national wildlife refuge they wish to hunt for details. For more information, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/waterfowl.
Sept. 24 — 26th Annual Oroville Salmon Festival, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Feather River Fish Hatchery, 5 Table Mountain Blvd., Oroville, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in downtown Oroville. The event will feature tours to view salmon spawning, informational booths, educational displays and vendor booths. For more information, visit https://www.visitoroville.com/salmon-festival.html.
Sept. 24 — Elkhorn Slough Reserve Open House, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., 1700 Elkhorn Road, Watsonville. Take a peek behind the scenes at the Elkhorn Slough Ecological Reserve. Talk to reserve scientists, pick up a native plant to take home and discover the innovative conservation happening at California’s second-largest estuary. There will be free bilingual games, crafts and activities hosted for all ages. No registration is required. For more details, visit www.elkhornslough.org/calendar.
General Deer Season Opens. General deer season opens in zones D3-5, D8-10, X8 and X10. Hunters should check for area closures and restrictions before heading to their destination. For information on land closures, contact the agency in charge of the hunting grounds. More information about general deer season opener dates, end dates and additional hunts is available at wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/deer. All deer tags purchased, whether used for a hunt or not, must be reported. Successful hunters must report their tags within 30 days of their successful hunt or by January 31, 2023, whichever is first. Hunters who are unsuccessful or who do not hunt are also required to report by Jan. 31, 2023.
Quail General Season Opens in Zone Q2 (all quail species), extending through January 29, 2023. For more information on upland game bird seasons and limits, visit wildlife.ca.gov/hunting/upland-game-birds.