Once again, a series of youth draw deer hunts will be conducted jointly by Santee Cooper (South Carolina Public Service Authority) and the Department of Natural Resources this fall.
Applications are now available; the deadline for submitting applications is Sept. 13 at 4 p.m. To request an application, call the Dennis Wildlife Center in Bonneau at (843) 825-3387.
Wildlife Management staff based at the Dennis Center work with Santee Cooper staff to manage the Moultrie Hunt Unit for all wildlife species, and to provide recreational opportunities especially for youth who might be new to the outdoors.
All hunts take place in the afternoon from two person stands located on the edges of wildlife openings planted in oats, wheat, soybeans or peas. The areas hunted are within Sandy Beach Wildlife Management Area and Cross Generating Station, both part of the Santee Cooper-owned Moultrie Hunt Unit.
Past participants are encouraged to tell their friends about their experience and to spread the word about the opportunity. Participants must be 17 or younger and capable of safely handling a firearm. They must also be accompanied by an adult 21 years of age or older. The youth hunter and the adult sit together in the stand, but only the youth may actually hunt or shoot.
SCDNR and Santee Cooper staff provide a hunting safety talk to all participants upon their arrival.
The hope is for young hunters to enjoy a positive experience and value the hunting tradition into adulthood.
Santee Cooper provides funding for the property management, personnel to assist with the logistics of the hunts, t-shirts for hunt participants and conducts the drawing.
Youth hunters are also encouraged to hunt on the 800-acre Bluefield WMA, also part of the Moultrie Hunt Unit. Each youth must be 17 or younger, and accompanied by an adult age 21 or older. The youth must carry a firearm and hunt. On Bluefield, unlike the youth-only draw hunts, the adult may also carry a firearm and hunt.
Fine current rules and regulations for season dates and limits here.