State of Montana Website Montana State Parks Website
Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters

2013 Program Sign-up Is Now Open     

Open Fields targets CRP and other highly productive game bird habitats on private lands that allow walk-in access for fall game bird hunting. Enrolled lands will be clearly posted to identify the area open to walk in game bird hunting.

Additional program information will be available midyear, 2014.

Through the Upland Game Bird Enhancement Program, FWP will accept “Open Fields” applications from eligible landowners May 20 through June 14, 2013.

Maps

FWP offers different ways you can locate Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters project areas.

County Maps

Click to see a larger version of the map.

Web View maps are 11" x 17". For your convenience, Print View splits the map into 2 pages (8.5" x 11" each).

Map A: Daniels, Roosevelt, Sheridan, and Valley Counties

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

Map B: Dawson (South), Fallon, and McCone Counties

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

Map C: Dawson (North) and Richland Counties

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

Map D: Glacier, Pondera, and Toole Counties

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

Map E: Cascade and Teton Counties

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

Map F: Chouteau County

Web View

PDF icon and link 2 MB

Print View

PDF icon and link 1 MB

FWP Hunt Planner

Open Fields for Game Bird Hunter project locations available on the interactive Hunt Planner. Hunters may view project locations and download or print individual maps. Use the “Zoom In” button on the upper left of the Hunt Planner to view Open Fields properties closely. You may also click on the “Map Tools” button on the upper right of the Hunt Planner to print maps or create a GPS file.

GIS Data

Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters GIS Data is available for download.

Program Eligibility

The following counties outside Indian Reservations are eligible for Open Fields enrollment:

Region 4
(North-Central Montana)

  • Cascade
  • Chouteau - South
  • Fergus
  • Glacier
  • Pondera
  • Teton
  • Toole

Region 6
(Northeast Montana)

  • Chouteau - Northeast
  • Daniels
  • McCone - North
  • Richland - North
  • Roosevelt
  • Sheridan
  • Valley

Region 7
(Eastern Montana)

  • Dawson
  • Fallon
  • McCone - South
  • Prairie
  • Richland - South
  • Wibaux

Application Deadline

The application deadline has passed. It was June 14, 2013.

Review Process

Enrollment in Open Fields is voluntary and competitive. All applications will undergo a review and scoring process by FWP staff. Contracts will be awarded based on evaluation scores and available funding. FWP will alert applicants of their status mid-July.

The Open Fields Application Packet provides additional details about eligibility, program compensation, access requirements, general application tips, and the application form.

Send the completed application and required maps to the address on the bottom of the application. Applications must be RECEIVED by June 14, 2013.

During 2012, game bird hunters had walk-in access with no further permission required on 55 enrolled lands totaling 17,000 acres of CRP and other quality habitats.

Watch for these signs!
During the fall season, hunters may walk in to hunt upland game birds and waterfowl without further permission. All lands enrolled in Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters will have boundaries signed.

FWP Hunt Planner
Open Fields for Game Bird Hunter project locations will be available on the Hunt Planner before the upland game bird season launches.

To view maps depicting lands enrolled in Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters, please visit the FWP Hunt Planner.

2012 Notice to Hunters
Be aware that some parcels of land enrolled in the Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters may be newly-seeded stands of CRP, may have recently undergone USDA-required maintenance provisions that include haying or grazing activities, or may have been hayed or grazed under the 2012 USDA-sanctioned drought & wildlife fire emergency provisions just prior to enrollment in the Open Fields program. Subsequently, for this first year of enrollment, the habitat on some parcels may not meet hunter expectations. Please keep in mind that these lands are enrolled in long-term contracts for up to 10 years, so subsequent years can be expected to yield improved habitat on affected parcels.

Downloadable County Maps
Downloadable county maps will be available before the 2013 bird season. Get your maps here.

2013 Notice to Hunters

Be aware that some parcels of land enrolled in the Open Fields for Game Bird Hunters may be newly-seeded stands of CRP or may have recently undergone USDA-required maintenance provisions that include haying or grazing activities. Subsequently, for this first year of enrollment, the habitat on some parcels may not meet hunter expectations. Please keep in mind that these lands are enrolled in long-term contracts for up to 10 years, so subsequent years can be expected to yield improved habitat on affected parcels.

Contact

For more information, contact your local FWP biologists:

Region Biologist Phone  
4 Diane Boyd (406) 271-2680 Email
4 – Fergus County only Sonja Smith      (406) 538-4658  x228 Email
6 Ryan Williamson       (406) 895-2468 Email
6 – NE Chouteau County only Scott Hemmer (406) 265-6177 x224 Email
6 – Valley County only Drew Henry                (406) 228-3709 Email
7 Steve Atwood           (406) 234-0940 Email

For more information:

  • Debbie Hohler
  • (406) 444-5674
  • E-mail