Great opportunities for hunting in Stratford - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Great opportunities for hunting in Stratford

Sheriff Jack Haile Sheriff Jack Haile
Game Warden Ryan Hunter Game Warden Ryan Hunter

Stratford, TX - After the drought impacted the hunting season in Stratford last year, many are hopeful this year is better.

Two major highways coming through the Stratford area help bring in a heavy flow of hunters every year, which helps boost the economy.

Stratford became the Pheasant Capital of Texas after one curious farmer, the current sheriff's grandfather decided to start raising the bird.

"In about 1950, he and several local farmers started raising pheasant and they would get in about a hundred eggs and turn all of the hens loose and turn a few of the roosters loose and eat the rest," said Sheriff Jack Haile.

Ryan Hunter the local game warden says once opening weekend starts, late this fall, hunters from all around start coming to the Stratford area because of the great opportunities to hunt.

Those hunters are a big help to the town.

"Hunting serves to boost the economy in a lot of different ways and it brings a lot of folks who usually are either just passing through, they actually stay due to the natively good diverse wildlife we have here," said Hunter.

"It's a big economic impact, they stay in our one motel but the cafe's everybody has fundraiser's during pheasant season," added Sheriff Haile.

After the drought diminished some of the populations last year, Hunter is hopeful the recent rains in the area will bring back some of the wildlife.

"I think that we will have a much better population of pheasants, I think we will have better populations of antelope, of mule deer and white tail deer.