COLUMBUS, Ohio – More than 14,000 ring-necked pheasants will be released at 24 Ohio public hunting areas this fall to provide additional hunting opportunities across the state, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

The ODNR Division of Wildlife will release pheasants on Friday, Oct. 20, and Friday, Oct. 27, prior to the small-game weekends for youth hunters. Youth ages 17 and younger can hunt statewide for rabbit, pheasant and all other legal game in season during two designated weekends, Oct. 21-22 and Oct. 28-29.

Ohio’s small game hunting season begins on Friday, Nov. 3. Pheasants will be released for opening day, and prior to the Veterans Day and Thanksgiving holiday weekends.

Hunters should note the increased youth hunting opportunity available at the Spring Valley Wildlife Area located on the county line for Greene and Warren counties. Pheasants will be released there for the two youth weekends in October as well as the other three release dates.

Youth and regular pheasant hunting within the Ringneck Ridge Area in Sandusky County requires a free permit from the Sandusky County Park District. Visit sanduskycountyparks.com for more information.

Ring-necked pheasants will be released in Ohio. Photo from ODNR.

Pheasant hunting season opens on Friday, Nov. 3, and remains open through Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018, with a daily bag limit of two rooster (male) birds. No hens (females) may be killed. Females are all brown while the males have a green head, a red and brown body, as well as long tail feathers.

Statewide pheasant hunting hours are sunrise to sunset.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.