EL PASO, Texas - The United States Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) has released information about bird hunting areas on USIBWC lands.
This includes lands along the Rio Grande in El Paso and Hudspeth Counties, Texas and in Doña Ana and Sierra Counties, New Mexico.
The 2014/2015 bird hunting season starts with dove season on Sept. 1 and marks the first time the USIBWC has authorized hunting along the Rio Grande in New Mexico.
It is prohibited to hunt where people could be endangered, such as near businesses, homes, and bridges.
During the 2014/2015 season, hunting will be permitted as follows:
- Between markers 52 and 54: from approximately 5.7 miles downstream from the Ysleta-Zaragoza Port of Entry to just upstream from San Elizario.
- Between markers 59 and 69: near Herring Road downstream to the vicinity of the Tornillo-Guadalupe (Fabens-Caseta) International Bridge.
- Between markers 72 and 90: from 1.2 miles downstream from the Tornillo-Guadalupe (Fabens-Caseta) International Bridge to 0.8 miles upstream from the Ft. Hancock-Porvenir International Bridge.
- Between marker 92 and Esperanza Road (FM 192): from 1.4 miles downstream from the Ft. Hancock-Porvenir International Bridge for 26.7 miles to Esperanza Road (FM 192).
The USIBWC does not control the access points in Texas but is providing information about access as a courtesy to hunters. The access points are:
- Through the gate in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection fence next to the Ysleta-Zaragoza International Bridge, open 5:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. during dove season, except when law enforcement operations require temporary closures.
- At the Alamo Arroyo near marker 86, accessed from Highway 20 approximately 3.5 miles west of Fort Hancock.
- At the Guayuco Arroyo on Esperanza Road (FM 192) approximately one-half mile west from the intersection with FM 34.
- At Esperanza Road (FM 192) in Hudspeth County approximately 28 miles downstream from the Fort Hancock-Porvenir International Bridge.
For public safety and to avoid damage to USIBWC lands and infrastructure, hunters must abide by the following rules:
- Use existing ramps to drive onto the levee or floodplain. Driving on the levee slope damages the levee and is prohibited.
- Hunters are responsible for identifying legal access points to reach hunting areas and must respect private property.
- Do not damage vegetation in the floodplain. Avoid driving on grass, brush, and trees or disturbing the ground.
- Remove your trash, including any shell casings.
- No alcoholic beverages.
- Do not discharge firearms in the vicinity of homes, businesses or other people.
- Hunters who drive on the levee or hunt on USIBWC lands do so at their own risk. Hunters should be aware of security considerations along the border with Mexico.
- Hunters must have any applicable hunting license, follow state hunting laws, and use appropriate firearms. Texas and New Mexico game wardens will enforce state hunting laws on USIBWC lands.
- Only bird hunting is allowed. No other hunting or target practice is permitted.