Government Shutdown Keeps Hunters Home

Hunters from across the United States who drew special waterfowl hunting permits for our area -- woke up to disappointment opening weekend.

With the ongoing government shutdown, wildlife refuges like McNary, the Hanford Reach and Umatilla are still closed.

Fish and Wildlife officials tell us bird hunting in this area is so much in demand, this year alone, they received more than 11,000 applications for hunting blinds, and only 1,100 spaces were given.

But with the grounds closed, hunters were forced to stay home.

Officials say they understand hunters' disappointment.

They can't move the season -- that's mandated by the state.

However they do plan to talk about options once the shutdown ends, which could include possibly giving special permit holders another chance next year.