Michigan’s pheasant opener kicks off Wednesday in the Lower Peninsula, and hunters will have the opportunity to harvest stocked birds at select state game areas throughout Southern Michigan.
In late 2018, Michigan United Conservation Clubs, working on behalf of the Michigan Pheasant Hunting Initiative (MPHI) and a MUCC member-passed resolution, was able to secure $260,000 general fund to operationalize a pheasant stocking initiative on state game areas.
The pilot program ran in 2019 and was canceled for 2020 due to budgetary restrictions during COVID. In 2020, MUCC was able to get a pheasant license passed that will fund the stocking initiative.
For the 2021 season, hunters in the Lower Peninsula 18 and over will be required to purchase a $25 pheasant license in order to pursue pheasants on public and Hunter Access Program lands.
The nine state game areas that will receive rooster pheasant stocking from opening week through the week of Nov. 14 include: St. John’s Marsh, Erie, Point Mouillee, Crow Island, Pinconning, Lapeer, Rose Lake, Cornish and Leidy Lake.
MUCC member and MPHI President Ken Dalton brought the 2017 resolution initiating the pheasant stocking program forward to MUCC.
“We saw a need to get more hunters afield and do our part to help with R3,” Dalton said. “This fall, Michigan hunters will be able to find rooster pheasants closer to home at state game areas and MPHI is excited to have initiated this first-of-its kind program.”
Alex Beachum donated $25,000 in memory of his mother, Kristine Beachum, to supplement the pheasant stocking costs in the first year before license revenues kick in and fund the program in the future.
To read the full release about Beachum’s donation, please click here.
“Just like my mom gave the sacred gift of time afield and the special camaraderie it brings to my dad and me, I want to give that same gift to other fellow Michiganders with a generous and highly symbolic donation of pheasants to be released for all to enjoy, in honor of the life and memory of Kristine Ann Beachum,” Beachum said.