Mississippi gets its fourth-annual spring squirrel season in Mississippi in 2018, but it has yet to lure many sportsmen to participate, with most citing “too hot to hunt” as the reason.

But is it?

“No, not at all,” said Greg Berry of Oxford. “The daily limit is four, and I usually get that before it has a chance to get too hot. My dog and I are usually in and out by 8. When we take a couple of other shooters along, we can still be done by 10 and still be OK.

“That said, I would add that it borders on being too snaky. You need to keep an eye out for them, especially around water. Last May, we ran into cottonmouths on every trip, and we saw a lot of copperheads, too. We saw one or two rattlesnakes, but heard more.”

Even the threat of a no-shoulder encounter isn’t enough to keep Berry and his four-legged mixed-breed partner, Willy, out of the woods.

“Every day that I get to hunt with Willy is a blessing, and it’s worth the snakes and the gnats,” Berry said. “We have about five places we hunt in rotation, and I think we’ve found every mulberry tree there is. If Willy hasn’t treed any before we get to the mulberry trees, then we sit and wait underneath the fruit, and they will come.

“We found two trees very close together last year, and three of us with guns, plus Willy, limited out in two hours. Willy’s OK with it because he is a rare treeing dog in that he also retrieves. He’s 10 years old, and he is content to just sit with us and wait.”

The season opens May 15 and ends June 1. The bag limit is four per day per hunter.