Wilson Wildlife Area

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Wilson Wildlife Area is located in the scenic Smoky Hills of northcentral Kansas and is on the upper end of 9,000 acre Wilson Reservoir. The 8,069 acre public hunting area is made up of 5,000 acres of rugged rolling hills of native prairie, approximately 2,000 acres of cropland, and 1,000 acres of riparian timber along the Saline River, Cedar Creek, Turkey Creek, and Elm Creek.

Area management will focus on providing a quality experience for visitors, and managing wildlife and wildlife habitats for optimum hunting, fishing and outdoor recreational opportunities. Pheasant, quail, turkey, dove, rabbit, whitetail deer, waterfowl, furbearers and many songbirds and non-game wildlife inhabit or pass through and use the area.

The area has a waterfowl refuge that was established in 1996. Hunting opportunities are fair for deer, turkey, waterfowl, and upland birds. The area receives heavy hunting pressure during season openers and can provide less crowded conditions later in the hunting seasons.

Information shelters on the area and the Wilson Area Office have more information available.

Area News - Updated: 08/31/2013
2015 Managed Dove Fields (OCTET-STREAM - 6.77 kB)

All designated dove management fields described below require NON-TOXIC SHOT for the 2015 DOVE SEASON.  If hunters choose to hunt other locations on the WA not specifically managed for doves, non-toxic shot is not required.  Sunflower fields will have portions of fields mowed leading up to the season.  Wheat fields will be burned, mowed, or lightly disked.  Some managed dove fields will have mowed parking areas and/or mowed walking trails to the fields.

The Spring Creek Dove Fields will be reserved for a youth dove hunt on Sept 5th.  They will be closed to hunting Sept 1st-4th.  The Spring Creek Dove Fields will be open to all dove hunters September 6th.  This area is closed to hunting to improve opportunities for the youth hunters.  Thank you for your cooperation.  Several other managed sunflower and wheat fields are open to all dove hunters September 1st.

Mellard Rd Sunflower Dove Field (8 ac) - 3/4 mile east of 192nd and Mellard Rd, field on south side of Mellard Rd; sunflowers produced well and strips will be mowed in mid/late August

Old Archery Range Sunflower Dove Field (8 ac) - Access from hunter parking lot 1/2 mile north of Saline River Bridge on east side of 192nd Rd; a walking trail will be mowed to the field; sunflowers produced well and strips will be mowed in mid/late August.

Dam Rd Sunflower (5 ac) and Wheat (5 ac) Dove Fields - Access from hunter parking lot 1/2 mile north of Dam Rd and 193rd; a walking trail to the fields will be mowed; sunflowers produced well and strips will be mowed in mid/late August; wheat will be mowed and/or disked lightly

Cedar Creek Bridge Sunflower Dove Field (4 ac)– Located ¼ north of Land Rd and 195th (Cedar Creek Bridge); sunflowers produced well and strips will be mowed in mid/late August

Spring Creek Sunflower and Wheat Dove Fields– Located along Reservoir Lane near Spring Creek; One wheat field (10 acres) will be burned toward the end of August; two cover crop fields produced an excellent stand of sunflowers and strips will be mowed in mid/late August.  Reserved for youth dove hunt on Sept 5th.  Closed to dove hunting Sept 1st-4th.  Open to all dove hunters Sept 6th.

Mandatory Hunter Survey Cards will be required through the first full weekend of dove hunting season and will be available at each field.

2015 Youth Mentor Dove Hunt Information (PDF - 343.62 kB)

KDWPT, in partnership with Black Gold Pheasants Forever and Big Brothers Big Sisters, will host the 5th Annual Youth Mentor Dove Hunt at Wilson Wildlife Area on September 4th and 5th. 

General Information

Wilson Wildlife Area

Contact: Scott Thomasson

Phone: (785) 658-2465

Wilson Area Office
#3 State Park Road
Sylvan Grove, KS, 67481


                                CURRENT EVENTS
ATTENTION: The refuge at Wilson Wildlife Area will be closed to all activities Sept 1 - Jan 31 except by special permit.


Dove Season opens September 1st.  Several sunflower and wheat fields are managed to attract doves.  Field location and details will be posted soon.  Wilson WA, Black Gold Pheasants Forever, and Big Brothers Big Sisters will host the 5th Annual Youth Mentor Dove Hunt.  More information will be posted soon.
KDWPT, Pheasants Forever, and Midway District 4H Shooting Sports will host a Youth Shooting Clinic on October 24th at the Ellsworth Gun Club.  All shooting equipment will be provided.  Contact Tim Hays at 785-531-1712 to register.  More details will be posted closer to the event.


Special Regulations
  • Camping and off road vehicle use are not allowed on the area.
  • No Cliff jumping


Here is a complete list of Public Land Regulations or you can download the regulation summary.


The 8,069 acre Wilson Wildlife Area was made available to the Kansas Forestry Fish and Game Commission under the terms of a license with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1965.

Wilson Facilities
Elm Creek Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 38.936369 -98.629865
  • Click for more information

    This Boat ramp is used for small watercraft and is not usable when lake is 5 feet low.

    Located 6 miles north of Bunker Hill.

Cedar Creek Boat Ramp

Area Maintenance Building
  • Type of Facility: Information Center
  • Location of Facility: 39.973018 -98.723434
  • Click for more information

    Field office and equipment storage.

    Located 6 miles north of Bunker Hill.

Wilson Wildlife Area Calendar

    Wilson Waterfowl Report - 02/06/2015
    Waterfowl numbers

    1000 ducks

    300 light geese and 1500 Canadas

    Mallard Migration Rank

    Mallard Migration Rank = 4

    The Mallard Migration Rank is subjective and ranges from 0 (no mallards) to 10 (Peak Mallard Numbers)

    Click here to learn more about the Mallard Migration Rank.

    Water level 1508.79 ft; 7.2 ft below conservation pool.  Record Low Elevation
    Hunting conditions  Low Plains Late Zone Duck season closed. Goose Open. Lake has ltitle ice. Geese loafing on lake during day and feeding on private lands.
    Expected hunting success Good when birds arrive. Birds off points from Pelican point to Spillway ramp and along north side in Lucas area.

    Cedar Creek and Elm Creek boat ramps are NOT OPEN due to low water conditions

    Refuge CLOSED SEPT 1 through JAN 31

    Contact Corps of Engineers at 785-658-2551 for hunting restrictions around Minooka, Lucas and Sylvan Parks

    Contact Wilson State Park at 785-658-2465 ext. 1 for hunting restrictions around Hell Creek & Otoe Parks

    To track the 2013-2014 waterfowl migration and post your hunting results visit Ducks Unlimited's Migration Map by clicking the link below:

    Ducks Unlimited Waterfowl Migration Map