Jamestown Wildlife Area

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Jamestown Wildlife Area Waterfowl Report
Click HERE for the current waterfowl report.

Of the 5,124 acres of public hunting now available on the area, over 1,900 acres are wetlands. The marshes are very shallow and have accumulated silt from the Marsh Creek watershed. As a result, the Department is embarking on a multiple year renovation for the areas wetlands beginning with Gun Club. Plans include new wetlands, new water control structures and renovation of existing wetlands by subdividing into units so water and vegetation can be managed more effectively. During renovation construction activities will impact and change uses of the area in the process of reaching the renovation goals. The goal of the renovation is to provide optimum wildlife habitat, improved user opportunities and play an important role in the overall Lower Republican River watershed management and life span of the marshes.

This area is located along a major migration route for the Central Flyway. The first waterfowl and shorebirds migrate through the area in late August. An 800-acre refuge is located at the north end of Gamekeeper Marsh. The refuge is closed to all activity from Oct. 1 through Mar. 1 except for the SPECIAL HUNTS conducted during hunting seasons. The refuge gives migratory birds a resting place and increases hunting and wildlife viewing opportunities on the area.

There are varieties of other wildlife habitats on the area. Upland birds and small game species use weeds, crop fields, grasses and shrubs, while big game prefers the timbered areas. The area offers excellent opportunities to view and photograph wildlife. Marsh Creek, Gamekeeper Dam, and Muskrat Landing are shallow boat landings for hunter access to waterfowl areas.

The limited public lands in Kansas require intensive wildlife management and some special restrictions. This area receives heavy hunting pressure. Wildlife population and hunter use surveys are conducted to evaluate management and the effects of heavy pressure on the area.

Click here for a Google Earth map of the area.


This year KDWPT will continue with the new daily permit system in the form of iSportsman at many properties across the state. iSportsman is an electronic registration/ data collection tool that will make data collection much easier for staff and allow for real time data analysis and stats throughout the season. What does this mean for hunters?  Initially, users will need to register with their personal information to set up an account in the iSportsman program. Once this is completed, the system will allow hunter to call in from any phone or log in from any PC or smart phone and "check-in" to hunt the property for the day. Once the hunt is over, hunter will call back in and report harvest, etc., similar to returning paper daily permits upon the completion of their hunt. For hunters that are new to the area, one permit station is available at the area headquarters.

HUNTERS WILL NEED TO ACCESS THE SITE TO REGISTER.  Go to https://kdwpt.isportsman.net/ to register, then scroll down to the blue "register" button at the bottom of the page and then provide the required information (not all information asked is required).

Once registered, hunters will be able to call or log on to the system and get their permit for the day. They can also visit the Jamestown Wildlife Area page on iSPORTSMAN at https://kdwpt.isportsman.net/Locations/Jamestown.aspx

Paper permits will no longer be available at the information centers.

Area News - Updated: 08/17/2021
Youth/Mentor Dove Field at Jamestown WA

Jamestown will have one 13-acre Buckwheat/weedy field for the 2021 dove hunting season. The managed dove field is located on the East side of Buffalo Creek North Marsh; 1.5 miles north of KS 28 at the City of Jamestown and ½ mile west on Vale Rd. The field is the first field North of the parking lot with the grain bin on the north side of Vale Rd. A trail will be mowed from the parking lot to the managed dove field.

You can find a Google Earth map of the Dove Field here.

Sept. 1 through Sept. 6 the dove field will be limited to youth/mentor hunting only and will be open to all hunters Sept. 7. The age for a Youth has been raised to 17 and under. A Mentor is a anyone age 18 and older. One Mentor can sponsor one or more Youths.

Jamestown WA is a non-toxic shot only area.

Jamestown uses the iSportsman electronic check in/ check out system. Hunters need to register on-line to create an account at https://kdwpt.isportsman.net/. Once an account is created, they then utilize their assigned permit number and password to check in prior to their hunt.

Hunters may check in to iSportsman as early as the evening before the hunt and check out after they are done hunting no later than 11:59 pm the day of the hunt. Information for iSportsman will be posted at all information stations. Please contact Matt Farmer with any questions.


Construction Projects Still Underway at Jamestown Wildlife Area

Hunters planning to waterfowl hunt at Jamestown Wildlife Area this season will see construction equipment and new infrastructure. While all the planned projects have not yet been completed great progress has been made. Gamekeeper Marsh and Gun Club Marsh will both be kept at a low level while construction on a division berm is underway in Gamekeeper Marsh. Work on raising the height on the Gamekeeper Marsh Dam will begin later in the year. During this time, waterfowl hunting access will be limited, but the managers have been working on providing access for the opportunities that still exist.

While construction is taking place, hunters can find huntable habitat on the south end of the property throughout the waterfowl season. Staff will be pumping select off-channel storage pools from Marsh Creek and Buffalo Creek Marshes for the season. A PDF map of these pools can be accessed by visiting ksoutdoors.com, then clicking “Hunting,” “Reports and Forecasts,” and scrolling down to “Jamestown Wildlife Area.”

“These areas have excellent moist soil food production and teal are starting to show up,” said Matt Farmer, Public Lands Manager for Jamestown. “We just ask that the public be mindful of the tighter spaces this season, and we appreciate their patience while we make improvements to the Wildlife Area.”

Since early July, construction crews have been building a division berm in Gamekeeper Marsh. As of the middle of August, construction is just over half way complete. Borrow areas where the contractors took the earth to build the berm will become new, managed wetlands.  A Pittman-Robertson grant has been submitted to raise Gamekeeper Dam 18 inches in order to accommodate the increased sediment load the marsh has taken on the last several decades. This work could start as early as late winter to early spring. The berm construction and dam increase will allow area managers to flood a larger area and better control water elevations, to manage for optimum moist soil production and increased hunting opportunities. While there is no set date on a final product as working conditions and Mother Nature will determine progress, managers expect an entirely new look for Gamekeeper Marsh by next season.

For more information on the construction taking place at Jamestown Wildlife Area, contact area staff at (785) 439-6243.

General Information

Wildlife Area Manager: Rob Unruh
Lovewell Office Phone: (785) 753-4971

Wildlife Area Assistant Manager: Matt Farmer 
Jamestown Office Phone: (785) 439-6243

Pheasants Forever Habitat Specialist: Joe Daniels

Special Regulations
  • Non-toxic shot required for all shotgun hunting.
  • Electronic Daily hunt permits ARE REQUIRED for ALL hunting.
  • Special hunts and Refuge areas are in effect Oct-1 - Jan 31.
  • Trapping is by permit only. The permit may be obtained from the Lovewell Area Office.
  • No trash receptacles are provide on the area. Please take your trash with you.
  • All motorized vehicles MUST remain on maintained roadways or parking areas.

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


Jamestown Wildlife Area is a collection of historical wetlands and associated uplands that have been under state management since 1932. Jamestown's two larger marshes were one of the twelve wetlands sold to provide funding for Emporia State Teachers College. Historically a "salty”, shallow, marshy area, in dry seasons salt was found where the water had been and when there was water an abundance of wildlife was found. The areas marshes attracted Native Americans, early settlers and were important to migrating herds of bison, flocks of waterfowl and other wildlife. Dams were constructed on the lower ends of both large marshes in the early 1900’s to provide a more reliable water supply for recreation.

Jamestown Facilities
Florell Hill
  • Type of Facility: Wildlife Viewing Area
  • Location of Facility: -55.150 41.662
  • Click for more information

    This area is located off of Highway 148 overlooking Gamekeeper Marsh from the north. There is a deck style viewing platform with railing for spotting scopes and a mowed parking area.

Southwest Gun Club
  • Type of Facility: Small Craft Launch Site/ Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 38.579 -54.346
  • Click for more information

    This single lane, rock ramp with a gravel parking lot will allow access to the southwest corner of Gun Club Marsh.

Marsh Creek North
  • Type of Facility: Small Craft Launch Site
  • Location of Facility: 38.734 -53.261
  • Click for more information

    This low water crossing will allow non-motorized boat access to the north end of Marsh Creek Marsh.

Marsh Creek South
  • Type of Facility: Small Craft Launch Site
  • Location of Facility: 37.483 -54.782
  • Click for more information

    This small craft launch site will allow non-motorized boat access to the south end of Marsh Creek Marsh.

Gamekeeper Marsh
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 40.999 -55.456
  • Click for more information

    This lingle lane gravel boat ramp is located in the northwest corner of the area off KS Hwy. 148 for access to the west side of Gamekeeper Marsh.

Gun Club East
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 39.044 -53.549
  • Click for more information

    This new single lane concrete boat ramp with a gravel parking lot is located on the east side of Gun Club Marsh providing access to Gun Club East.

Muskrat Landing
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: 39.657 -54.203
  • Click for more information

    This newly renovated area has two, single lane concrete boat ramps. The east ramp gives access to Gun Club East and the west ramp gives access to Gun Club west. There is a gravel parking area with a unisex, vault style toilet.

Gamekeeper Dam
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: 39.825 -54.236
  • Click for more information

    This single lane, concrete boat ramp with a gravel parking lot is located north of the Gamekeeper Dam on the east side for access to Gamekeeper Marsh .

Jamestown Wildlife Area Waterfowl Report - 09/15/2021
Waterfowl numbers

Teal numbers are fair at best. Warm weather, hunting pressure and the lack of cool weather has prevented any good migration flights from showing up.

REMEMBER: Hunters are REQUIRED to check in and check out using iSportsman electronic daily hunt permit system when they hunt the area. This important information gathered from hunt permits helps managers tailor management practices specific to an area and hunter preference.

Water levels

The area has experienced an extremely dry summer.  However some timely rains have improved water conditions.  Approximately 60% of the area has huntable water.  With that being said, marshes that are open to boats, have lower water levels than in years past. Hunters that plan to utilize boats (especially motorized boats) need to use extreme caution.

Puddler Marsh: Mostly dry with some small pockets of sheet water; Gamekeeper Marsh: 50% full with mostly sheet water with areas of three to six inches; Gun Club West Marsh: 50% full with an average depth of ten inches. Boating will be difficult in spots until water levels increase; Gun Club East: Currently, only the channels have water in them; Greenwing Marsh; 40% full with an average depth of 10"; Marsh Creek Marsh: 35% full as water was pumped out of this marsh to fill Buffalo Creek North Marsh.  The creek channel itself is around six feet deep.  Buffalo Creek Marshes: The north marsh is 80% full with an average depth of 14", The south Marsh is dry and we will need some rain to have sufficient water to pump that marsh; Pintail Marsh: Dry and will need significant rains to fill.  

All marshes have excellent moist soil habitat and cover. Several areas have been planted to millet, corn and milo during the summer to increase resources for waterfowl.

Hunting conditions

Moist soil conditions are excellent across the property.  Managers were able to repair multiple levee breaches and damage from the flooding in 2019.  Scouting will be a must to find birds and huntable water. Conditions are expected to improve throughout the fall, however some more rain would help.

Remember: NO ATV's are allowed on department lands and roads.

There is a no trash policy: If you take it in with you, please bring it out.  This includes spent shotgun shells.

ALL vehicles must remain on designated roads and parking areas. 

Expected hunting success Fair, depending on pressure and scouting efforts.


The NW corner of the Gamekeeper Marsh area that was open for hunting prior to 2020 will continue to be included as refuge this year.  Puddler marsh was a youth/mentor marsh up until the fall of 2019 when managers opened it up to all hunting.  That change, along with the additional 18 inch raise on Gamekeeper Dam will allow managers to move the youth mentor area to a special hunt area starting in the fall of 2021.  The new refuge line is along Highway 148 from the marsh creek bridge, north and east to the east boundary of the Wildlife Area.

Click here for pdf map of the new area. 

Waterfowl Seasons

Low Plains Teal Season

9/11/2021 - 9/26/2021

Low/Military Plains Youth

10/02/2021 - 10/03/2021

Low Plains Early Zone Duck Season

10/9/2021 - 12/5/2021 and 12/18/2021 - 01/02/2022

Canada Geese

10/30/2021 - 10/31/2021 and 11/03/2021 - 2/13/2022

White-Fronted Geese

10/30/2021 - 01/02/2022 and 01/22/2022 - 02/13/2022

Light Geese

10/30/2021 - 10/31/2021 and 11/03/2021 - 02/13/2022

Light Geese Conservation Order

02/14/2022 - 04/30/2022

Hunters are REQUIRED to check in AND OUT using the electronic permitting system.

Hunters need to create an account in iSportsman by going to https://kdwpt.isportsman.net and follow these simple directions:

  1. Scroll down the left side of the page to the blue "register" button.
  2. Provide hunter information.
  3. Once registered, hunters will be able to call or log in to the system to get their permit. They can also visit the Jamestown Wildlife Area page on iSportsman at  https://kdwpt.isportsman.net/Locations/Jamestown.aspx

Hunters need to make sure they have all the appropriate licenses and stamps for hunting waterfowl.  The following are required:

Kansas hunting license

State waterfowl stamp

Federal waterfowl stamp

Kansas Harvest Information Program Stamp (HIP)


Marsh Creek Marsh and the West Gamekeeper Marsh is for non-gasoline powered boats or paddle-in / Walk-in only, this includes electric motor boats and boats with no motors. Gasoline engines are prohibited.

Buffalo Creek & Pintail Marshes are for non-motorized boats and walk-in hunting only.



THE REFUGE IS OPEN on the north half of Gamekeeper Marsh. REFUGE WILL CLOSE ON OCT. 1, 2021 AND REMAIN CLOSED THRU - JANUARY 31, 2022. The refuge boundary has shifted northwest to Highway 148. 

Please introduce youth and novice hunters to the outdoors. Pass it on!